Martha by Mail ~ Heart Cookie Cutters
Delicious, fanciful hearts can be baked by the dozens with this set of heart cookie cutters from Martha by Mail. Twelve gleaming cutters made from solid copper by a talented American coppersmith, were exclusive designs for the catalog over a decade ago. Very collectible and truly meant to be treasured for years to come, the beautifully-shaped cookie cutters are perfect for any kind of celebration or holiday. Chocolates are nice and always welcomed on Valentine’s Day, but what sweetheart wouldn’t love a few of these cookies tucked into a special box tied with a gorgeous ribbon?
If you own the set, bake a few dozen hearts to give out. Follow the decorating instructions that were provided with each set (below) or make them your very own works of art. Perhaps you want to add a little message or simply want to flock the cookies with pastel-colored sanding sugars. Get creative! I guarantee that there won’t be a heart left.
For present and future collectors & bakers. Enjoy!
Bake a heart cookie for everyone you love. This set includes twelve heart-shaped cutters; use them to make sweet desserts for holidays, anniversaries, weddings, and birthdays. Your cookies will make perfect gifts for Valentine's Day.
Hand crafted in copper, the cutters range from 1 1/2" to 4 1/2" and have rolled edges to protect the baker's hands. Since the cutters to tarnish over time, clean them before using. Make your own polish by rubbing a cut lemon directly on the metal. Rinse cutter in hot water, then polish dry with a soft cloth. You can also use Red Bear powdered cleaner.
Small cookies take less time to bake than large ones; bake different sizes separately to avoid burning. The cookies on this card were decorated by using a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip and by following the techniques described below as well as in the accompanying "Decorating Cookies" booklet. Heart cookies are a good place to experiment with contrasting colors: try light royal icing on chocolate or gingerbread cookies and dark icing on sugar cookies.
1. Flower Garland Dot the cookie with dark-colored icing, and allow to dry. Pipe a second color of icing in a wavy line around the edge, making the garland; allow to dry. Using thick royal icing, affix sugar or gum paste flowers around the garland (these flowers are available from bakery-supply stores).
2. Single Flower Decorate a small heart with a simple, tiny polka-dot border using pale pink royal icing; allow to dry. Using thick royal icing as glue, adhere a gum paste flower to the center of the heart.
3. Plaid Pipe four vertical pale-pink stripes spaced equally across the heart. Pipe a vertical tan stripe on both sides of each stripe. Repeat the pattern horizontally, making only three sets of stripes. Pipe a large, pale-pink dot of royal icing in the center of each square.
4. Dotted "Broken Heart" Outline each half with pale-pink royal icing. Flood or fill in the outline, using the same color; allow to dry. Dot cookie with white icing.
5. Bow and Scroll Garland As soon as the cookie comes out of the oven, use a cake tester or chopstick to poke two holes near the valley of the heart. Once cool, pipe a pale pink scroll border around the cookie. Flock immediately with sanding sugar; allow to dry completely. Tap lightly to remove excess sugar; if any excess remains, brush it off with a dry pastry brush. When the icing has completely dried, thread a ribbon through the two holes and tie a bow.
6. Dotted Flowers Dot the cookie with royal icing using a medium round decorating tip; allow to dry. Using a small, round decorating tip and another icing color, pipe five tiny dots as petals around each of the large dots.
7. Crosshatch This technique works especially well on a fluted heart because you can use the edge as a guide for the design. Using pale-pink royal icing, pipe five evenly spaced vertical lines across the heart. Next, pipe six horizontal lines across the heart, again using the fluted edge as your guide; allow to dry. At each intersection, pipe a small dot of thick, dark-pink royal icing.
8. Dotted Border Using thin royal icing, pipe a line around the heart set in 1/4" from the edge; immediately flood within the outline. Pipe tiny dots as a border; allow to dry.
9. Dot-Flower Grid Outline the cookie with pale-pink royal icing and flood immediately; allow to dry. Pipe five thin vertical lines and three thin horizontal lines with white royal icing. Pipe a medium size pink dot in the center of each square, then pipe five smaller white dots around each large dot, making flower shapes.
10. and 11. Lots of Dots Simple lines and dots are beautiful on a heart shape. For cookie 10, pipe a thin line around the heart and set in 1/8" from the edge, then make small dots inside the outline; allow to dry. For cookie 11, make random dots of royal icing, then flock immediately with sanding sugar; allow to dry. Tap to remove any excess sugar.
12. Dotted Lines Pipe diagonal stripes across the cookie, alternating between two colors. Let the lines dry, then pipe small dots evenly along each line.