When I began my cookie adventure, I only used cookie cutters to get my shapes. I didn’t know much about how to hand cut cookie dough or using different cookie cutters to obtain the shapes I wanted. It was driving me crazy because everything I saw, I wanted to make into a cookie. Like these adorable wooden cutouts I got from Wal-Mart.
There are a ton of wooden shapes at craft stores. During the holidays they add cute seasonal ones that I can’t resist. The best part is they don’t cost much so go crazy and buy yourself some cute cookie patterns.
The world is full of cookie inspiration but unfortunately, they didn’t make a cutter for everything we see. I have learned with a little practice and a freezer, we can cut any shape we need.
See, the wooden shapes make cute cookies!
How to hand cut cookie dough supplies :
Sugar Cookie Dough
The secret to hand cutting cookies is to roll you dough out on a cutting mat or whatever you normally use. Then, place the mat with the rolled dough in the freezer for about 15 minutes. The dough will be nice and firm and easy to cut.
While your dough is chilling, you can trace and cut out your pattern. I know we all worry about food safety and this is one of the best tips I have ever seen. Sweet Sugar Belle came up with an awesome idea for a plastic cookie template with something we all have in our kitchen.
Trace the wooden pattern on the lid and cut it out with scissors.
Then, place the pattern on you very cold dough and cut around the template with the sharp knife.
If your dough is cold, your cookies will cut very easy. If the dough gets a little too warm, it will begin to tear as you cut. Just toss it back into the freezer for a few minutes and pick up where you left off when it is cold again. I can usually cut 3-4 cookies out before I have to place in the freezer again.
That is all there is to it. Don’t be afraid to hand cut. I personally would not do an order or platter with more than 20 hand cut cookies because it does take a little more time than using a cookie cutter.
I made the cookies the same size as the wooden shapes but, you can always adjust the size on a copy machine and then trace your pattern on the lid. I do that if my shape is a little too small or too large. I wish my cutters were that easy to adjust but, this can work for cutters also. I have one that is large so I made a smaller template and I keep it in my storage container with the original cutter.
If you cookies ever have an uneven surface, here is a good little tip to smooth them out.
Come back Wednesday and I will share the tutorial to make these cute little zoo animals.
If you would like to make these cut little guys, click here for the tutorial.