Coffee Bar Icing*
Happy December! Being a hardcore recessionista who is baking her holiday gifts this year, I’ve been cankle-deep in cookies for the past week. Is it kinda sad that I’m baking for my WoW friends who I’ll probably never meet in person? Maybe. A little. Alright… it’s pretty damn pathetic, but I’m having fun doing it. Some of these people have been in my life for years; I’ve gotten closer with them than most of the friends I hang out with in the “real” world. There. Justified. Moving on now.
Today’s recipe is a basic royal icing for cookies, cakes, and confections of most types. Everything you need can be scored at a convenience store coffee bar.
4 tablespoons powdered sugar (normal sugar packets run through a blender – the longer the better)
1 tub of flavored creamer
- Combine the sugar and creamer in the container and stir until smooth
- Use a spoon/knife/fork to spread/drizzle on your cookie/pastry/cake/whatever
Add more powdered sugar to thicken it up if you decide it’s too runny.
It’s hard to tell how long the icing takes to set/dry once on the cookie, since my apartment is consistently around 30° and nobody can really say whether the icing is drying or freezing. Yes, I’m really that frugal. With almost an entire side of my apartment being single-pane glass, I learned the hard way about trying to heat this place last winter. $250 heating bills? No thanks. I’ve got plenty of gloves/hats/sweaters, and the cat likes to burrow under the blankets anyway.
Here are the icings I tried using International Delight‘s creamers, compliments of 7-11’s coffee bar.
Chocolate – Tastes like sugar-free hot chocolate. Strong aftertaste, not worth the packets. Dense and foul. The creamer itself has the consistency of runny pudding, so use 3 tablespoons of powdered sugar rather than 4 if you want something other than paste.
Hazelnut – If your palate has already be desensitized by a lifetime of artificially flavored food, you might not notice how strongly this one smacks of chemicals. It isn’t bad, but if you’re going for the home-made taste you’d be better off with another flavor.
Caramel Macchiato – Strong and sweet, this one tastes just like it’ s supposed to. Excellent for covering up a bad batch of cookies, much like dumping ketchup on something you’d rather not eat but don’t want to offend your host.
French Vanilla – Very sweet with a hint of vanilla. I dig this one because it isn’t overpowering, and won’t undermine the flavor of an awesome cookie.
Amaretto – Even thought I Hate (capital H intentional) amaretto in general (it reminds me of a pillow fight gone wrong at a horrid squat house I lived in circa 2000, but that’s another story), I actually liked this icing. It’s more cherry-like than anything else, and doesn’t have that weird flashback-inducing amaretto aftertaste.
Stok – I thought this was going to taste like crap, but sometimes it’s nice to be wrong. Stok icing has a really nice, smooth coffee flavor with almost no aftertaste. It turns out a pretty pale brown, which matches the flavor perfectly. As a bonus, your cookies are now caffeinated! Stok is watery, so be prepared to use extra powdered sugar to thicken it up. If you have trouble finding the stuff, Exxon stations usually have it.
Pumpkin Pie Spice – Tastes like (get ready for this…) pumpkin spice latte. With it’s short-lived-yet-pleasant aftertaste, this one is definitely a favorite.
MIA: Irish Creme, Caribbean Cinnamon Creme, White Chocolate Mocha, Vanilla Latte, and whatever other flavors had already been pilfered from every convenience store I visited.
*Warning: may cause horrifying, relationship-ruining flatulence.