Introduction: Snowman Matryoshka (nesting Doll) Cookies

About: I'm a stay at home mum of 3 young kids and I love baking, decorating cookies, making cake pops and pretty much making any type of fun food that my kids will enjoy. I have a blog Bubble and Sweet where I share…

What could be cooler and more fun than snowman cookies.

A set of snowman cookies made with matryoshka nesting doll cookie cutters, that's what.

Made up in a set these cookies make fun gifts for teachers or friends and are great for kids cookie decorating parties.

And once you have picked up a set of nesting doll cookie cutters the best thing is that you can use them to make all kinds of cool cookies like the penguins and Santa shown in the picture. Or I guess even nesting doll cookies, y'know the possibilities are endless.

But let's start here with these easy snowman cookies that don't require super hero decorating powers. With just a few simple steps you can turn a plain cookie into every ones favorite icy pal.

Oh and if you have trouble picking up a set of the matryoshka cookie cutters, don't worry you can just use a plain 'ole snowman cookie cutter, follow the same steps and the finished cookie will be just as awesome.

Equipment and Ingredients

Cookie dough (if you don't have a recipe I have one included at step 1)
Large wooden rolling pin
White ready roll fondant ^
gel food color in light blue and orange^ (You can replace the blue with any color you like)
black edible pen^
sharp knife
brush and water
Matryoshka/ Nesting doll cookie cutter #

^ Ready Roll Fondant (or pettince fondant), gel food color and edible pens can be found at large hobby stores (like Michaels or Hobby Lobby in the US or Spotlight in Australia), online cake decorating stores or Ebay.

# Nesting doll cookie cutter sets can be found at specialty online decorating cookie or cake store and Ebay. They are sometimes called Matryoshka, Russian Doll or Babushka cookie cutters. The usually come in a set of 3 or 5.

Step 1: Make and Bake the Cookies

Make up a batch of cookie dough using your favorite recipe suitable for cut out cookies and chill in the fridge for about 30 minutes or until firm. If you don't have your own, don't worry I have shared my recipe below :)

Line a couple of baking trays with parchment paper.

Lightly dust a workbench with all purpose flour and using a large wooden rolling pin, roll out the dough* until desired thickness, generally no thicker than around 1/4" (1/2 cm).

*Tip - you don't need to roll out all the cookie dough at once. Cut a piece off around the size of your fist, it will be easier to work with and roll out evenly.

Cut out cookies using the matryoshka cookie cutter and place the unbaked cookies onto the prepared trays.

Pop the trays into the freezer for about 10 to 15 minutes. This step helps the cookies to not spread (get too much bigger) while baking.

Bake in an oven which has been preheated to 325 F (160 C) until golden, around 12 - 15 minutes. Carefully remove to a cooling rack.

Vanilla Sugar cut out recipe:

1 stick  (4 ounces) unsalted butter (114 grams) softened to room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1 extra large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups plus 1 Tablespoon All Purpose Flour (plain flour) sifted
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Using a mixer cream butter and sugar.

Add egg and vanilla and mix well. Add the dry ingredients to butter mixture and mix until dough comes together.

Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in fridge for 30 minutes.

Step 2: Cover the Cookie

Lightly dust the workbench with cornflour/ cornstarch.

Take the white fondant ** and knead until pliable and then roll out using the small plastic rolling pin until a couple of mm (1/8") in thickness. I like to lift my fondant frequently and turn it like pie dough to ensure it does not stick to the bench while rolling it out. Add more cornflour/ cornstarch as needed, but not too much otherwise the fondant will taste funny.

Use the same matryoshka cookie cutter to cut out a shape from the fondant.

Lightly brush a cookie with a small amount of water and place the fondant over the cookie, using the rolling pin lightly press down to adhere the fondant to the cookie.

Repeat with remaining cookies.

** Fondant dries out pretty quickly so I work with a little fondant at a time covering one or two cookies. The remaining fondant I leave wrapped in a little cling wrap/ glad wrap until I need it.

Step 3: Add a Cute Knitted Hat

Make up a small amount of light blue fondant by kneading some gel food color into the white fondant until evenly distributed.

Roll out a small amount of the colored fondant on a cornflour/ cornstarch dusted workbench until 1/8" (a couple of mm)  in thickness.

Using the nesting doll cutter cut out the head, then using the side of the nesting doll cutter where it curves at the shoulder section press down about .5cm from the top of the head to make a little beanie/ hat. You can make the hat bigger or larger as you like.

Adhere the hat to the snowman cookie as shown in the picture using a very small amount of water and pressing down lightly with the rolling pin as needed.

Still using the curved side of the rolling pin, press in down lightly about 1/16" (approx 1mm) from the bottom curved edge of the hat to make a small decorative indent.

If you like you can use the square corner edge of the cookie cutter to make more decorative indents in the hat to look like knitting by lightly pressing the corner into the hat at random spots.

Use the flat back of the knife to lightly press vertical indents along the 'rim' of the beanie.

Roll a small ball of white fondant and adhere it to the top of the hat to look like a little pom pom.

Repeat for remaining cookies.

Step 4: Add a Warm Wooly Scarf

Make the scarf by rolling out some more of the fondant and using the sharp knife cut out 2 strips around 1/4" (1/2cm)wide and 1 1/2" (4 cm) long. At one end using the sharp knife to cut a fringe around 1/4" .5cm long with about 4 to 5 pieces as per the picture.

Using a small amount of water adhere the scarf pieces around the neck of the snowman.and cut any overhang at the neck off using the sharp knife.

Repeat for remaining cookies.

Step 5: Meet Mr Snowman - Adding the Final Details

Shape a small nose using the orange fondant and adhere to the middle of the face with a very small amount of water.

Allow the fondant on the snowman to dry a couple of hours and then using the edible pen draw on 2 eyes and 5 dots for the mouth. I find starting with the center dot on the mouth and working my way out makes for a more even smile.

Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.

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