masala chai ninja cookies….hiiiiyaaaa!

18 Mar

masala chai sugar cookie the urbanpocketknife

I’m fan of ridiculous looking food, for a friend’s surprise birthday party a while back I was itching to bust out the ol ninja cookie cutters and turned a simple sugar cookie recipe into a masala chai one.  The theme of the party was a sea of plaid so I dug up my biggest cookie cutter for ample stripe-age.

masala chai sugar cookie the urbanpocketknife

Here’s the recipe!

What you need!
3 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup butter softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tbsp milk
1 tbsp loose leaf tea (use something strong, mine was an assam with a bit of bergamot)
1 to 1 1/2 tsp ground masala (try to use one that is intended to make chai, different combos will be stronger than others so experiment!)
confectioner’s sugar for rolling out dough

Royal Icing:
4 pasteurized egg whites (usually found in cartons)
4 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar
1 tsp lemon extract
gel food colouring

What to do!

1.  Sift all dry ingredients and set aside.  Cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy.  Add egg and milk and beat to combine.

2.  Slowly add flour mixture, if your electric mixer can’t hack it, you can switch to your hands or a wooden spoon.  The batter will seem a bit crumbly but then will form until a soft malleable dough.

3.  Divide the dough into 2 and wrap with waxed paper.  Chill in the fridge for 2 hours.

4.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  If needed use confectioner’s sugar on rolling pin and surface to minimize sticking.  Roll out dough to 1/4″ and cut with cutters.  Place on cookie sheet with parchment paper or silpat.

5.  Bake for 7-9 minutes, rotating tray halfway through.  Cookies are done with they are slightly browned around the edges.

6.  Cool completely before icing.

7.  Make royal icing:  beat egg whites in uber clean bowl until foamy.  Slowly add sugar, beat at high speed until thickened.  Colour with gel food colouring and pipe to your hearts galore!

Tips and Tricks
1.  To help the cookies maintain their shape while baking, make sure the dough is still cold.  Stick the tray in the fridge if it’s warmed and only roll out one dough at a time.  Keep it cold people!

masala chai sugar cookie the urbanpocketknife

2.  Since the royal icing is never cooked, pasteurized egg white are used because of the fear of salmonella, especially if you’re preggers.  Some people use regular egg whites and some use meringue powder instead, you decided what’s right for you.

3.  Royal icing can be a pain if you don’t make it the right consistency.  Don’t dump in all the confectioner’s sugar at once, keep doing the 10 second test until you’ve got it just right.  Drag a spoon or chopstick across the surface of the icing and it should pool back to flat in 10 seconds.  If it’s too quick, add more icing sugar, if it’s too slow, try adding more lemon juice or water.  Some people make a thicker “outlining” icing and  a poolier flood icing but seriously, who’s got time for that?

4.  Cookie cutters sticking?  Mash it around in some confectioner’s sugar first.

masala chai sugar cookie the urbanpocketknife


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