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Holá Y'all! With Cinco de Mayo right around the corner, we're over here LIVING for bright and festive everything. Truth be told, Team ellenJAY pretty much lives for all things bright and festive year round. So, clearly, Cinco de Mayo holds a special place in our hearts. Since most of us will be celebrating at home this year rather than hitting our FAVE Mexican Restaurant, we thought you may enjoy a little piñata sugar cookie tutorial to spice up your fiesta!
To get started, you'll need one batch of our favorite sugar cookie dough.
SUGAR COOKIE DOUGH INGREDIENTS
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
2 sticks unsalted butter, cold, cut into chunks
1 teaspoon vanilla
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Mix well.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine sugar and butter and mix on medium speed until well combined.
3. Add egg and vanilla and mix well.
Gradually add flour mixture, scraping sides of bowl as needed until dough comes together.
4. Place wax paper on countertop and lightly flour surface.
5. Take half of the cookie dough and knead together and roll out to about 1/4-inch thickness with rolling pin.
6. Cut out your piñatas with cookie cutters and place onto prepared cookie sheet about 1 inch apart.
7. Place unbaked cookies into refrigerator for 20 minutes to chill. This will help the cookies keep their shape when baking.
8. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes.
9. Allow cookies to cool on pans for 5 minutes, then remove to wire racks to continue cooling.
Next, you will need one batch of our favorite Royal Icing recipe.
ROYAL ICING INGREDIENTS
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup meringue powder
1/2 cup water
1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine confectioners’ sugar and meringue powder and mix on low.
2. Add water and beat on medium speed for 4 minutes until icing is fluffy and stiff peaks form.
3. Place icing in plastic airtight containers until ready to use.
HOW TO PREPARE YOUR ROYAL ICING
Divide icing evenly into bowls. (Because we used 6 colors to decorated our cookies, we used 6 bowls.) Tint icing with your color gel. We prefer Americolor Soft Gel Paste. To make our cookie fiesta extra bright, we used: Lemon Yellow, Teal, Electric Green, Soft Pink, Sky Blue and Orange.
To make the piñata ruffles, we used (6) Wilton #104 tips; one for each color. We always use couplers in our piping bags as it allows you to easily switch the piping tip out if needed. If you only have a one or two tip #104s, you can clean them in between colors and re-use on other piping bags with couplers rather than going out to buy more tips. We promise, you can make it work!
HOW TO MAKE ROYAL ICING RUFFLES
Start at the BOTTOM of your cookie with your first layer of colored icing.
To create the ruffled edge, point the skinny part of the tip #104 towards you. Gently squeeze your piping bag while moving your hand in a slight up and down motion as if you are drawing the letter "U" continuously and quickly. PRO TIP: Do some test ruffles on parchment paper to practice before starting on your cookies.
Then, add the next color ruffle on top with a slight overlap to create the layered, piñata look. Before you know it, your piñata cookies will be fiesta ready! Olé!!
Once all your piñata ruffles are done, allow icing to dry several hours or overnight. Once icing is completely dry, cookies can be stacked or individually packaged. Storing in an air tight container keeps them fresh for up to a week. Heat sealing in individual cello bag keeps them fresh even longer.
We hope y'all enjoyed this tutorial! Wasn't learning how to decorate piñata cookies FUN?!? Happy Cinco de Mayo!