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Table Decorations

Biscuit Star Garland

Biscuit Star Garland

In the March/February 2014 issue of Brides we enlisted
the help of pretty biscuit experts Biscuiteers to create a gorgeous
star garland for us. Here is how to make you own using their pro
tips and tricks: 

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Ingredients:

Orange Biscuits: 350g plain flour, 100g self-raising
flour, 125g granulated sugar, 125g salted butter – diced, 125g
golden syrup, 1 large egg – lightly beaten, Grated zest of 2
oranges

Royal Icing:  150ml cold water, 900g royal icing
sugar (most big supermarkets sell this special variety of icing
sugar – make sure it contains powdered egg white otherwise the
icing wont set hard)

Recipe:

Preheat the oven to 170c/350f/gas mark 4.

Sift the flours together into a mixing bowl; add the sugar and
orange zest. Mix well.

Add the butter. Using just the tips of your fingers, rub
together the ingredients until the mixture resembles fine
breadcrumbs. When all the butter is evenly mixed in, make a well in
the centre and add the syrup and the egg.

Mix well, drawing in any of the flour left at the sides of the
bowl and stop as soon as a ball has formed.

Place the dough onto your clean worktop. Divide into two and
squash the dough into two even-sized flat discs. Cover and chill
until ready to use, or roll out immediately.

Place the dough on a sheet of parchment and begin by gently
squashing the dough down with a rolling pin or your hands. Cover
with a second sheet of parchment and then use the rolling pin to
roll out properly.

The top sheet of paper may crinkle from time to time, just peel
it off and smooth it down gently before starting to roll again.

Gently roll the dough until it is 5mm thick all over, then
transfer the whole sheet of rolled dough still sandwiched between
its sheets of parchment to a baking tray and place in the fridge to
chill for at least 20 – 30 minutes before cutting out your
stars.

To use the dough efficiently cut the biscuits out as close
together as possible. Lift each biscuit onto the parchment covered
baking tray and make sure they are not too close together as the
dough will spread a little on baking. Using a drinking straw,
pierce a hole around 1cm from the edge of the star tip.  

Evenly space the trays in the oven and cook for 14-18 minutes,
depending on your oven.

When the biscuits are evenly cooked and just beginning to turn a
golden colour remove the trays from the oven and transfer the whole
sheet of parchment to a cooling rack. Do this carefully as they
will be quite fragile and hot!

Cool totally before starting to ice. Now here is the fun
bit!

To Ice your Biscuit:

To start, cut your piping bag straight across to achieve a
clean icing line.

Always use a clean piping bag, so that your icing colours stay
lovely and bold.

We use two basic types of royal icing at Biscuiteers – line
icing which is a thick, smooth paste for piping details and edging,
and flood icing which is mixed with more water for a runnier glossy
mixture to fill larger areas.

Using the line icing (it should be smooth and thick, a bit like
the texture of toothpaste), outline the stars in either Primrose,
Mustard or Bright Yellow (the outline and filling should be the
same colour). This stops the runny flood icing from escaping.

Once the edges are dry (about 10 minutes in room temperature)
use the runny royal icing to flood the stars.

When filling areas with runny flood icing, use a sharp cocktail
stick to burst any bubbles. This will help achieve a smooth and
luxurious finish. Pop the biscuits in your oven for 45 minutes on
the lowest temperature to dry the runny icing. Use golden or silver
baubles to add that glimmering, finishing touch to your
stars. 

Construction:

Depending on the length you would like the garland, cut around
2m of good quality twine or parcel ribbon and tie a loop at one
end. This will help you secure it onto a hook when you’re ready to
hang the garland.

Thread the ribbon or twine through the star and tie a knot
around the tip of the star being careful not to pull too tight, and
break the biscuit.

Measure around 18cm, tie a knot and then thread the next one,
again securing the biscuit in place by tying a knot around the
biscuit. Continue these steps until you have threaded all 24
biscuit along the rope evenly and finish by tying another loop at
the end of the twine/ ribbon.

Iced biscuits, from £2.95 each, www.biscuiteers.com 

As seen in the March/April 2014 issue
of Brides