I love Easter – it’s a time spent with family and friends where you try to eat your body weight in chocolate. Plus with a few extra days off work, there’s some time to bake some delicious treats.
Last year I made some biscuits in the appropriate Easter shapes of rabbits and chicks. Although they tasted great, I wasn’t thrilled with my icing skills or lack thereof.
In fact, biscuit icing is one of my weaknesses when it comes to baking. Recently I gave it another go with my sugar ‘cupcake’ cookies, but I wasn’t too happy with the end result and they ended up looking like ice creams (although that could have been down to the colours I chose). Anyway, a few days later as I was scrolling through my Instagram feed, I saw a picture of some beautifully decorated biscuits and asked for some tips from the baker. With some expert advice, I now felt confident to give icing biscuits another go.
I used the same recipe as last year but with some new cookie cutters that I bought from the Steamer Trading Company. The biscuits themselves were quite simple and quick to make, what took the time though was icing them.
The icing tips that I followed were to use a number 2 nozzle to pipe an outline around the edge of the biscuits and then use the remaining icing to fill it in. I had a cocktail stick at the ready to burst any air bubbles that popped up and spread any icing over bits of biscuit that were left uncovered. Despite not having a steady hand, I definitely feel that this was my best batch of biscuits so far and the main pieces of advice I would give to anyone who is not confident with icing biscuits is to definitely give yourself enough time to do the task and be patient. Don’t get flustered if you make a mistake. You may have a few odd shaped biscuits or ones that caught in the oven and as a result are slightly overcooked, so use these ones to practice on first – it will help.
If you would like to bake some of these biscuits for your Easter celebrations then please find the recipe below. Happy baking!
Easter Biscuits, Waitrose Recipe, makes 30
75g unsalted butter
80g caster sugar
1 large egg
2 tablespoons of golden syrup
265g self-raising flour (plus extra for dusting)
1 lemon, zest
1 orange, zest
To decorate: (This is how much icing I used)
200g royal icing sugar
Juice from ½ lemon (optional – otherwise use water as packet suggests)
Food colours of your choice
First pre-heat your oven to 180°C and line 2-3 baking trays with some greaseproof paper
Cream together the butter and sugar with electric beaters for 1 minute
Beat together the egg and golden syrup and mix into the creamed butter
Sift in the flour and add the zests, then beat until it comes together in dough form
Lightly dust your work surface (and rolling pin) with self-raising flour and roll out the dough
Using your Easter themed cookie cutters, cut out the biscuits and place them on the trays. Repeat this step until all your dough has been used
Pop them in the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes until golden. (I would recommend checking them after 12 minutes)
How to decorate…
Note: The below icing instructions are based on what I did, but if you don’t have a lot of time, then you can just make as much icing as you need and pipe a design onto each biscuit without any base icing
Juice half a lemon and add the juice to 200g of royal icing sugar
Mix until you get the desired consistency (you may need to add a bit of cold water if the mixture is too stiff)
Divide the icing between three bowl and add your chosen colours
Using dispensable icing bags, put the number 2 nozzle into the bag then add your chosen icing
Cut a small hole at the end of the piping bag and pipe a thin outline around each biscuit and then pipe a big splodge in the middle too
Using a cocktail stick, spread the icing between the outline and the splodge, popping any air bubbles that come up as you go
Repeat the above steps until you’ve decorated all your biscuits with your desired base colour and then leave to set for an hour
When the base icing has set, make up some more icing in the additional colours you need to decorate your biscuits
Pipe your chosen designs onto your biscuits, using a cocktail stick to neaten any designs
Leave the biscuits to set for at least 1 hour before serving