After several failed attempts over the years, I usually ended up with smashed candies running all over the cookie sheet in a sticky, layered mess.
Either the gods were with me this time, or I finally found a recipe that works. Don’t be intimated by this recipe; it’s really pretty easy if you remember to keep your oven at 325, and not 350, and to chill the dough first.
The idea is to use a straw to make a hole in the top, and to tie the cookies with string as ornaments; especially for Christmas-themed cookies. Except, I’m much more realistic now that I have four boys.Â What’s the point when the boys will eat them five minutes after I hang them anyway?
The ingredients were pretty simple, and came from a Martha Stewart cookie magazine that I ended up buying because we couldn’t find the magazine in time to return it when it was due. Here’s the recipe:
- Cream butter and sugar on medium speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg; beat until smooth, 1 minute.
- Mix together flour and dry ingredients in a separate bowl, and slowly add to butter mixture.
- Stir in vanilla.
- Place mixing bowl in refrigerator for at least 45 minutes. Don’t skip this step. The cold dough will not “melt” on the cookie sheet.
- Meanwhile, unwrap the candies, and place candies in a plastic bag, and begin hammering it with a meat tenderizer. You’ll need to cover the bag with a towel; but be careful. We ended up making holes in the towel.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- Remove cookie dough from refrigerator, and roll out to 1/4-inch thickness. Use a bit of flour to keep the dough from sticking.
- Use the large hearts to cut the cookies.
- Using a spatula, move the cut cookies to a parchment-lined baking sheet, about 1 inch apart.
- Once the cookies are on the baking sheet, use the smaller heart to cut out the space for the candies.
- Sprinkle broken candies into centers, being careful not to let the candies lay on top of your cookies.
- You can either cook the baby hearts, or use them to roll out more dough for cookies.
- Martha says to put the baking sheet into the refrigerator to chill the dough for about 15 minutes. I don’t have that kind of space in my refrigerator; so don’t worry if you can’t.
- Place baking sheet in oven, and cook for about 6-8 minutes. The trick is not to let the cookies brown, as the stained glass windows will turn out bubbly and not clear.
- There were a few cookies that did not have enough candy to reach the edges of the cookies; it’s hard to know just how much the melted candy will spread. When that happened, I just added a few more peices of candy to the centers, and they melted very fast with the rest of the candy.
I am definitely making a green batch of shamrocks for St. Patrick’s Day. Maybe, I’ll have them done before Easter.
I wish we lived closer! (Once again…)
I’ll admit it: I’m too afraid of failure to even attempt these things. But I’d do it if I had a friend to help — help me laugh at myself, that is. May as well make failing fun.
I might have to give these a shot. I think my kids would love making these.
I have been long looking for a great stained glass cookie recipe. I’ll likely get our Valentine’s ones done around the 4th July. Thank you for this!
These turned out beautifully, Susie! The whole time I was reading, I was thinking of suggesting that you bake some shamrock cookies, but you were planning to do that all along. 😛
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Pretty. You can use the same technique to make stained glass windows for your gingerbread house… (I know, I know…)
Did you know that you can write a secret message with a light-blue fine point marker. Then, using orange, red, and pink markers, doodle shapes, scribbles, or words over the rest of the paper. Then when you put the cookie over the paper, which now looks just like a scibbled mess, the message is revealed. I make Valentine cards for my boys this way and they like it because of the secret spy type thing whereas they would not like a regular Valentine because they feel it is too girly. Your boys might like it, too.