I’ve been wanting to make an iced Torah cookie since I picked up the cookie cutter in a set with other Jewish themed cutters. Simchat Torah seems the perfect occasion to try it out. “Simchat Torah” literally means “rejoicing the Torah” and it is where we celebrate the conclusion of the annual cycle of Torah readings and begin it again. Simchat Torah is a joyous occasion marked with much singing and dancing and of course, eating sweets.
Making iced cookies is somewhat of an art form and I have a lot of practice at it. Use your favorite sugar cookie recipe and make sure the surface of the cookie is very flat, without any significant bubbles. I don’t have a lot to say about cookie decorating beyond what the scads of cookie bloggers publish daily about, but here are some of the unique aspects on how I typically go about decorating a cookie like this:
Unless it is a very, very basic design (like just filling of one color) I will usually practice my design on paper. To do this, I trace the cookie cutter onto paper and photo copy the pages. You can also use your “bad”, misshapen cookies for practice but I usually don’t have enough of those, so I use paper.
Then, I literally practice my design on the paper, using the icing I intend for the cookie. I try variations to see which design works best.
The paper will never look as good as the real thing but I feel it helps me work out the best design and practice the movements I will need on the real thing. Here, I only needed four tries before I settled on a design (top right).
The trick to making great iced cookies is often correctly ordering the steps of decorating. Here there were just 3 steps:
- Fill cookie with base color. Let dry somewhat (shown above).
- Pipe wooden posts in brown
- Pipe golden edges and Star of David
And here is the finished thing!
May you all have song-filled and joyous Simchat Torah.