Not too long ago I was surfing the web in search of some fun Valentine’s Day baking stuff. I was thinking about picking up some sprinkles, maybe a new cookie cutter or two, when I came across a cookie cutout of a jar filled with heart sprinkles. “What a cute idea!” I thought. But then it instantly reminded me of the song “Jar of Hearts,” which is decidedly not so cute. But I was stuck on the idea of a “cute jar of hearts” so I set about trying to figure out how I might make it cute. Ultimately, the only thing I could come up with, was that a mad scientist would probably find a jar of hearts cute (in a morbid sort of way, maybe?). Making mad scientists and jars of hearts Valentine’s Day cute? Challenge accepted!!
Madly in Love
Yields a set of 12 cookies with 4 designs
12 cookies (3 large rectangles, 3 beakers, 3 small hearts, and 3 small rectangles)
1 batch royal icing
Pink and black food gel coloring
Heart shaped sprinkles
#1 piping tip(s)
Light pink luster dust (optional)
Start by making your cookies. I used a plain sugar cookie recipe, but you can really use whatever kind of cutout flavor you’d like. Most of the cookie shapes for this set are pretty simple, but I didn’t have a beaker cutter when I made these. Of course, you can always hand cut your cookies, but for the beaker, I actually used a broom cutter I had from Halloween. I just cut off the nobs on the sides and voila! Beakers! Once your cookies have cooled (preferably overnight), you can icing all but the beaker cookies with a base coat of white royal icing (I colored a little icing pink a flooded a few of the small hearts with it for variety). If you’re adding sprinkles to the small heart cookies, you’ll want to add them while the icing is still wet. Let the flooded cookies dry overnight.
Mix up some black piping icing, and using a #1 tip, pipe the outline for your beakers. Let it harden a little before flooding with white icing, otherwise the black coloring may leech into the white. Right after flooding with the white icing, pipe your black lines to create measurement lines and drop your heart shaped sprinkles onto the wet icing. Let harden overnight.
Using the same black icing, I free-hand piped “Madly in Love” on the small, rectangular cookies. I then mixed up a little pink piping icing, and added hearts to the cookies. To make hearts, simply apply a small dollop of icing and as you release the pressure on the piping bag, pull the icing down towards. Create another small dollop of icing right next to the first, and as you release the pressure, pull the icing down towards the rest of the icing. See, easy peasy!
To make the mad scientists, I started by working up a sketch of my own. I more or less draw everything before I put it on a cookie so I know exactly what I want it to look like. For this little guy, I started with his glasses, then worked up to his hair, and then finally down to create his face. From there, I gave him a neck, worked to the left to create his arm holding a beaker, and then to the right to make his other arm, and finally down to the edge of the cookie with his lab coat. I filled in the little bit of detail for his face and coat, and then went back with the pink icing to add some hearts and fumes to his beaker. Once all of the icing had dried, I went back and added a little pink luster dust with a brush to make him blush.
Make sure to let your cookies completely dry before packaging!