The easiest, quickest way to ice sugar cookies for St. Patrick's Day is to make them in shapes of four leaf clovers. By keeping the designs simple, and by using only two shades of green, you're St. Paddy's day cookies can be made in no time at all. As much as I would like to dedicate several days to make very intricate designs on my cookies, I always end up keeping them pretty straightforward.
Let's jump right into the designs I made for the people of my town.
Start by cutting out some cookie dough with a large 4-5" shamrock cutter (you can use smaller cutters if you feel like it) and baking them until they are done. Make a double batch of my perfect royal icing and have gel food coloring in 'Kelly Green' and 'Leaf Green' at the ready.
Once the cookies have cooled completely, tint the royal icing in two shades of green and get it to the right flowing consistency for piping. Whether you use squeeze bottles or pastry bags, fit each with either a #3 or a #4 plain piping tip.
Begin by outlining the shamrock cookie with a bead of green icing (in either shade). Immediately flock it in either fine sanding sugar or in dark green edible glitter (add the glitter with a paint brush and do so delicately). Let the icing and sugar/glitter dry completely. Shake off the excess.
Add another bead of royal icing in either the opposite color or in the corresponding color along the edge of the dried icing, and then immediately flood the entire cookie with the royal icing. While the icing is wet, add 3 dots of the opposite color on each petal of the clover. Add the dots in the form of a triangle. Working quickly and while the icing is still wet, drag the icing with a decorating pick (or a toothpick) and create a 3 leaf clover design as shown. Add a gold shamrock candy in the center of the cookie. Let it dry completely.
Using gold cake decorating highlighter thinned out with a flavorless alcohol, apply small dots of gold on each petal of the 3 leaf clovers and along the stems of the large 4 leaf clover as shown. Done!
In my decorating frenzy I realized this cookie had a flaw in it. Do you see it? I completely forgot to add 3 gold dots on the bottom left clover design!!! Arrrrrgggg.
I do have to say that I am all of a sudden addicted to adding edible glitter to my decorated cookies. I think it makes cookies look very unique, special and dazzling.
There you have it folks. Easy peasy cookie decorating for St. Paddy's day. Get those cookie cutters out and start making some sugar cookies for your neighbors, friends and family. If you want to give some to your coworkers, make extra and slip some into clear cellophane bags.