Heart Cookies

By Emma Marsden From the book Heart On A Plate
Heart Cookies

These crisp lemon biscuits are flooded with knicker-pink icing and dotted with pretty white hearts.

For how many? Makes 8


  • 75g butter
  • 75g golden caster sugar
  • Zest of half a lemon
  • 1-2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 150g plain flour, sifted, plus extra for dusting
  • For the icing:
  • 250g icing sugar
  • 1 egg white
  • Red food colouring
  • You will need:
  • 7cm heart-shaped cutter
  • Piping bag fitted with a 1-2mm round nozzle


Preheat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan/gas 5. Line 2 baking sheets with baking parchment. Beat the butter, sugar and lemon zest together in a bowl. Stir in the lemon juice and flour until the mixture looks crumbly, then form into a ball with your hands. Place on a lightly floured board and knead to make a smooth dough. Shape into a circle then wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for 15 minutes.

Lightly flour a board and roll out the dough until it’s about 3mm thick. Cut out 8 biscuits either freehand or using a 7cm cutter, rerolling the dough as necessary. Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets and chill in the fridge for 10 minutes.

Bake for 10-12 minutes, until golden. Cool on a wire rack.

To make the icing, whisk half the icing sugar in a bowl with the egg white. Continue to add the icing sugar, a spoonful at a time, until it’s all mixed in. Whisk well for 5-10 minutes, until the mixture is thick.

Put a heaped tablespoon of icing into a dish and set aside. Dip a cocktail stick into the food colouring and stir it into the rest of the icing. Whisk well to incorporate the colour completely. Add more colouring until you have the desired shade.

Spoon one-third of the pink icing into a piping bag fitted with a 1-2mm round nozzle. Pipe around the edge of a biscuit to create a raised border. Spoon more of the pink icing into the middle of the biscuit and use the back of a spoon to flood the inside border.

Use a cocktail stick to place small dots of white icing around the edges, or all over, the pink icing on the biscuit, then drag a clean cocktail stick from top to bottom of each dot to create heart shapes. Allow to set while you decorate the remaining biscuits in the same way.

Store in an airtight container and enjoy within 5 days.

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