Saltwater Buttercream Cookies

Buttercream decorated sugar cookies

If you weren't with me this time last year....I revealed a super big secret on Valentine's Day. And I'm not going to repeat myself, so you're just going to have to scroll back through the last year and...okay, I'm just kidding. On basically every account. You can click here for the post. But honestly, I just rambled on for kind of a while and showed super weird pictures of cookies decorated with butter cream that did not look at all appetizing unless you were 3 years old. Oh, and my whole point was that my mom always made butter cream Valentine's Day cookies. And they were nearly as big as my head. Or the state of Indiana. So, you know pretty much the same size either way.

And I feel it is important that my own children get to experience this Valentine tradition. Without it, they could totally grow up to be responsible broccoli eating citizens, never knowing how their stark, sprinkle free lives could be different. I can't take that risk. And then I was thinking that maybe YOU shouldn't be taking that risk either. So I'm also including my recipe for Saltwater Butter Cream. 

Butter cream icing for decorating sugar cookies

This is a crusting buttercream. That means that flat(ish) designs will dry firm enough to be packaged and stacked. Delicate flowers or designs with thin edges won't stack/package as well. 

Saltwater Butter Cream
1 Tablespoon warm water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter (room temperature if at all possible)
2 teaspoons vanilla
4-6 cups powdered sugar

Dissolve the salt in the water and set aside. Cream butter and 4 cups of powdered sugar together in a mixing bowl until they are well blended. Add the saltwater and vanilla and mix well. Add the remaining powdered sugar 1 cup at a time until the butter cream is as thick as you want it to be. Whip on high speed for 2-3 minutes.

***You can make this frosting thinner or stiffer by leaving out some powdered sugar, or adding more.

***You CAN make this with butter straight from the fridge. I do it all the time. Just be aware that your frosting will soften  about 20 minutes after you make it if you use cold butter. So make it a little stiffer than you want it to end up.

*** For the BEST chocolate butter cream you have ever tasted -- substitute 1/2 cup of cocoa powder for the same amount of powdered sugar. (And if you want your frosting darker, mix the cocoa powder with the saltwater first.)

PS -- If you're worried about making ugly cookies like mine last year -- don't be. I'm pretty much already the champion of weirdy Valentine's Day cookies that no one but a child would ever even think about eating. Plus, you don't even HAVE to make butter cream cookies that look like butter cream cookies.

Feel free to make them your own style.

And as long as we're talking about your own style of butter cream you all should REALLY be checking out Kim's cookies!!

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