I’ve always seen Valentines Day as a non-event in my life. Partnered or not, for a whole 25 years the spirit of red roses and overwhelmingly cute plush bears has never resounded within me on February 14. If you have a wonderful man or ladyfriend in your life to care for shouldn’t you try and make them feel special every single day of the year? Shouldn’t you want to make everyone in your life feel that way anyway? Yeah. Totes. So there’s no way I’d ever make something lame like heart cookies.
I now run a recipe blog. Fate slapped me in the face when, whilst looking for old paints the other day, I came across a set of brand new, unopened graduated heart-shaped cookie cutters hidden in a mysterious box in the garage. And thus I found myself torn at the cross-roads of Valentines baking.
Admittedly I eyed off some pink food dyes and red sanding sugars and for a moment I thought I may have been turned. Nahhh jokes, what actually happened is that I went to my room to organise all of my Japanophile collectibles when, like divine intervention, inspiration struck in the form of beloved Domo Kun.
To make these Domo heart cookies you’ll need:
- A batch of sugar cookie dough + cocoa + red food colouring (Martha Stewart can help you out here)
- One large heart shaped cookie cutter (for the body)
- One small, rectangle cutter (for the mouth)
- Black candy beads (for the eyes)
- Royal icing (for the teeth). You could probably use white chocolate in lieu of this.
Prepare cookie dough as per Martha’s instructions. Remove around one quarter or one third of the mixture and place it in a smaller bowl with a few drops of food colouring and combine until it’s as red as you’d like (you may want to add another tablespoon of flour if it’s too wet from the colouring). With the remaining dough add just under 1/4 of a cup of cocoa and once again combine (if it’s a little crumbly add a teaspoon or two of milk until it reaches a similar consistency of the red dough). Wrap both your brown and red cookie doughs in plastic and place in the fridge for a few hours, or overnight, to chill. And now begins the fun part.
1.Roll out your chocolate dough and make some hearts with your cookie cutter.
2. Take your small, rectangular cutter and make a hole in the centre of the heart for the mouth. Pop these in the freezer on a tray so they’ll hold their shape.
3. Meanwhile, roll out your red dough and cut some Domo mouths with the same, rectangular cutter (yes I used the base of a mini-grater, ingenious I know).
4. Remove your chocolate hearts from the freezer and replace the holes with pieces of the red cookie dough. Because the hearts have firmed up you’ll be able to press the malleable red dough into shape within the hole to avoid any gaps during baking.
5. Optional tip: take one of the candy beads and make imprints where the eyes should be. Although these will rise during baking they will still make a handy maker and crevice, much easier for applying later.
6. Bake in the oven at 180°C for 7-8 minutes and allow to cool. Prepare royal icing (or white chocolate). Use as glue to attach the candy beads as eyes.
7. Now this is where I became a little unstuck. Place more royal icing in a piping bag (mine was an awful, flimsy sandwich bag). I found the best way to illustrate the teeth was to draw two straight lines along the top and bottom of the mouth.
8. Create four little peaks or triangles with a toothpick, carefully nudging the mixture. (Do this quickly before it dries! I recommend doing steps 7 and 8 per cookie rather than striping them all then returning to adjust the teeth.)
And there you go, fellow weeaboos! Please feel free to bake these and spread the Japanophile love (and please see below for some cross-processed Tumblr fodder to celebrate the occasion). Happy Valentines!
PS. As I type this I feel incredibly ill. Like, super fever ill; hot and sweaty and achey and confused. Maybe it’s Valentines Fever. I caught it! :<
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