A bit of pound cake with a brightly iced cookie top.
These cookies are the same size as a mushroom, but taste better and are cuter to boot.
Ingredients for making the mushrooms:
1 cup butter (two sticks)
1/2 cup pecans (walnuts or hazelnuts work as well)
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pound cake (a frozen loaf is fine)
Black decorator’s gel
Red and green food coloring
White frosting or white fondant
Ingredients for Royal Icing:
1 3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 egg white
The cookies are a slightly less sweet version of the cookie used in the Koopa Shell Cookie. These cookies hold their shape well, plus they’re darn tasty.
As with all things involving royal icing, there will be long drying times. If you’d rather do these recipe in steps, the cookies can be made the day before and stored in an air tight container.
To start off the cookies, beat together the softened butter and sugar until the mixture is fluffy and looks like mayo.
Add the vanilla extract.
Mix in the salt and flour until everything is well combined.
Add the pecans (or whatever nut suits your fancy) and stir.
Wrap up the dough in plastic wrap and pop in the fridge for a hour for it to firm up. Cooling the dough isn’t required, but it does make the ball forming a tiny bit easier.
Once you’re ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F.
Form into one inch balls and place on a cookie sheet.
Bake for about 15 minutes, until the cookies are firm and the bottoms are golden brown. Allow the cookies to cool.
Creating the bottom part of the mushroom is easy. Pick out a circular cookie cutter that’s a little smaller than your baked cookies. Take a slice of pound cake that’s about 1/2″ thick and cut out as many pieces as needed.
When you’re ready to make the royal icing, beat the egg white and the lemon juice together for a few minutes. Add the powdered sugar to the mixture until you get a thick icing. If it’s too thick, add a few drops of water.
Lay down some tin foil and coat the sides of the pound cake pieces with the icing. If your icing is too thin, add a bit more powdered sugar to the icing mix.
Allow the freshly iced pieces to dry for about an hour.
This next part gets quite messy, so you’ll want a lot of paper towels and a sink nearby!
Divide the reminding icing into two bowls. Dye one green and one red.
Dip the cookies into the icing, making sure to get the tops fully colored. Place the iced cookies on a tin foil sheet. Don’t worry about the icing run-off from the cookies, we’ll take care of that next.
Allow the cookies to sit for an hour. After that, move the cookies from their rather-messy location over to a clean sheet of tin foil. This way the icing run-off won’t harden to the cookie (which would lead to rather odd mushroom shapes.) If the extra edge icing doesn’t fall off the cookie when you pick it up, knock the edge of the cookie on the counter-top.
The cookies should sit for another 30 minutes to finish hardening, as the icing around the edge of the cookie will still be soft.
To finish the top of the mushroom, draw circles with white frosting or use fondant. I used tiny balls of fondant and pushed them onto the cookie.
And to finish the bottom part of the mushroom, draw on eyes with black decorator’s gel.
Whew! Now to finally put them together! Take a bottom part of the mushroom, add a little frosting to glue the top part on, and then push on the cookie.
Makes about dozen and half mushrooms.