This year I volunteered to make cookies for a carnival themed gala at R’s school. The theme colors are vibrant greens and blues with a touch of sparkle thrown in. While I was making those cookies (pictures coming soon), a request for another batch came up. Only these were for a coffee morning at the same school with the same theme. Now, I like decorating cookies but I’m not yet so far gone as to want to make many separate batches of icing within the same week. Hence, these not-so-delicate tea/coffee party cookies were born.
In my mind, tea parties are elaborate and delicate affairs, throwbacks to a bygone time when tea breaks provided a valuable hiatus to people’s days, and much was made of them. In privileged India, in those days, families would gather around a patio set in their lawns waiting for a domestic help to arrive with a tray laden with a kettle and matching cups perched on saucers, doilies, some snacks. Tea time was a chance to take some time off in the day, catch up on some gossip after a hot afternoon siesta. The British had left us with arguably their most pleasant custom: the ritual of late-afternoon tea.
The other thing that I didn’t do before decorating these cookies was to research lots and lots of cups-n-saucer cookies. Since these were a last-minute idea, I realized I had no clue how to create the illusion of a drink inside the cup or what designs I wanted to make on the kettle, so I just winged it.
Truth be told, these aren’t my most favorite batch of decorated cookies. I’m just glad I had the foresight to make some chocolate dough to give this collection a little bit of variety. I learnt something: some empty spaces on a cookie actually look good. Consider the chocolate cups on the bottom (blue with froth). I quite like how the space actually looks like a design element.
I also (re)learnt another thing: You can’t rush into taking pictures without giving these babies enough time to dry. (See above.) This time it couldn’t be helped though; I either could have slightly damaged icing in a picture (which no one would probably notice while eating the cookie) or have no pictures at all. Ah, well.
Anyway, these went out into the world slightly unloved by their maker, but still managed to make someone happy. And that’s exactly what sugary treats are meant to do. 🙂