If you're making intricate cookies, you can spend tedious hours shaping and designing — or you can bust out your silicone molds.
Most bakers use silicone molds for fondant or gum paste decorations, but you're gonna want to hack these tools for cookies. You will be astonished at the shapes and textures you can create. Want your cookie to look like a feather or a piece of lace? Done.
A few tips and tricks to get you started
- Use a cookie recipe that holds its shape when baking.
- Add color to your dough by kneading in gel food coloring , just as you would for fondant.
- Use cornstarch instead of flour when dusting molds or shaping cookies. Cornstarch is finer and dissolves more easily, plus it won't leave a powdery residue.
- Bake cookies straight from the fridge or freezer to hold their details and prevent them from puffing up.
- Store cookies in an airtight container layered between parchment paper to prevent breakage.
Method 1: Roll in the mold
1. Dust the mold
Use a food-safe paintbrush to dust the mold with cornstarch. Take care to push the cornstarch into every cranny and tap out the excess.
2. Get rollin'
You've got to roll out your dough, but not before putting it in the mold! Place a ball of dough into the opening and then smooth it out using a rolling pin.
3. Trim the edges and freeze
Clean away any excess with an icing spatula or a small knife. Then, put the mold into the freezer until the dough is solid, about 10 minutes.
Remove the mold from the freezer and flip it over onto a lined cookie sheet. Carefully peel the mold away, leaving the dough on the sheet. Repeat to make as many cookies as you need.
Bake the cookies straight from the freezer at 350 F for 7-10 minutes, depending on the thickness of your molded dough.
Method 2: Bake in the mold
1. Dust with sugar
First, you've gotta know: you're going to bake the cookies right in the mold, so make sure it's heatproof and oven-safe to at least 400 F. When you have your mold, dust it with cornstarch. It's super easy to use a paintbrush to get into every cranny.
2. Fill the mold
Roll a small ball of cookie dough between your fingertips. Push the ball into the most detailed part of the mold.
Then, insert more pieces of dough until the mold is a little less than full. Adding the dough a bit at a time ensures that your cookies will be properly shaped. Clean away any excess dough with an icing spatula or small knife.
3. Firm it up
Put the filled mold into the fridge or freezer until the cookies are firm all the way through.
Place the chilled mold onto a cookie sheet (this makes it easier to handle when taking it in and out of the oven). Bake at 350 F for 10-12 minutes, depending on the thickness of your mold.
Allow the cookies to cool completely before removing them from the mold. If the shape you're making is very delicate, allow the mold to cool to room temperature, then place it in the freezer for a few minutes to firm up before un-molding.
Method 3: Add detail to rolled dough
1. Roll the dough
Roll the sugar cookie dough to about ¼-inch thick.
Place the mold or form onto the dough, detailed side down. Press it into the dough with steady, even pressure. Carefully remove the mold, edges first to reveal your design.
3. Cut 'em out
Using a cookie cutter, cut shapes from the dough. Carefully move the shapes to a lined cookie sheet.
4. Chill out
Place the sheet in the fridge or freezer until the cookies are thoroughly chilled, about 20 minutes.
Bake the chilled cookies at 350 F for 8-10 minutes. Allow the cookies to cool to room temperature before moving from the sheet.
Images via Erin Bakes