Cookies are always a good gift for almost any occasion. They can be a real masterpiece and as a bonus you can eat them. I find that adults don't eat them because they find it too pretty but children have no problem and eat it in a few minutes.
Step 1: Make the Bottom, Sides and Top and Decorate
The dough I used for the cookie box
As almost always I use gingerbread as the base of my cookie box. I use my instantly soft gingerbread cookie recipe because it's ready to eat when cooled, you don't have to wait days for it to soften. You can read the recipe here. The only thing I did differently is that I used a little bit less butter. This is because I needed a firmer texture for the sides of the box that can support the lid. If I used the same amount of butter I would have risked the box cracking and barking under the weight of the lid. And the other thing is that I left the cookies in the oven longer so that thew would dry out more. Preparing the elements So you need 6 pieces of cookie to make the box. The bottom and the lid are the same shape. The sides, the front and the back are the remaining elements. After they came out the oven I left them to cool completely. Than I cut off the bottom of the sides, back and front piece so they can stay in a 90 degree angle. You can see the difference between the edges in the video too. Next step is making the royal icing. I have an only two ingredient royal icing recipe that only uses egg whites and powdered sugar. Is important that you use the finest sugar because the sugar cristals may cause a lot of head ache later. Put the icing in a piping bag that has a piping tip number 1 or 2 attached to it.
You can decorate the box as you like it: Geometrical shapes - the easiest and the fastest method, but the result is not that stunning. For beginners this is the best way to get started.Mixing colors - after making a line along the edges you can flood the cookies with soft consistency royal icing and until is wet add lines and dots with colored icing. With a needle or tooth pick connect the lines.Lace patterns - time consuming and needs a steady hand, I would recommend it only for advanced cookie and cake decorators to use this technique.Embroidery inspired flowers, shapes - this is what I like to use the most because it is ready in relatively short time and the result is pretty. An intermediate level technique.You can get some inspiration from one of my other posts where I use these techniques : Giant Heart Cookie for Weddings andHungarian Embroidery and Lace on Cookies Assembling the Cookie Box The assembly process is a little bit tricky for just one person. As you can see it I struggled in the video too, the sides didn't want to stay in place at first. But after applying a lot of "glue", which in my case was royal icing the pieces stuck together. The other option as "glue" is caramel. But I find it harder to work with plus you can easily burn yourself with the hot caramel. After putting "glue" on the bottom of the sides, front and back I also put icing between them. It's not a problem is the lines at first are not pretty, later it will be covered. After you manage to glue the box together leave it for a few hours so that the icing can dry. When it's all set you can start hiding the lines by piping over them. I also added a trim on the bottom piece to make it nicer.