I have always loved making mixtapes and playlists, both for myself and as gifts. In high school, these playlists were full of songs that my parents hated (a good mix of Alexisonfire, My Chemical Romance, Taking Back Sunday, and Underoath). The songs were burned onto a plain silver CD, with the name of the playlist scribbled on with a black sharpie. I kept most of these early playlists for myself and only exchanged them with friends I knew were into the same genre. In university, the songs were mostly indie and the process was a bit more elaborate — burn the songs onto a CD, come up with some poetic title for the album, make my own album cover, and give the album away as a special gift. The album cover would mostly likely be a mixed medium painting or collage featuring words I cut out from a poetry book. How cute.
I would like to think that this is part of the evolution of my playlist making, an edible playlist of sorts. I would still put together a Spotify playlist, but I would then also make cassette tape cookies that reflect some of the artists featured on the playlist. Cassette tape cookies are extremely easy to make — any sugar cookie or shortbread cookie recipe will do. The hardest part about cassette tape cookies is finding the cassette boxes. I was quite lucky because my parents kept all the cassette tapes from 20+ years ago. Of course, you can find clear cassette tape boxes online.
Valentine’s Mixtape Cookies
- Your favourite sugar cookie or shortbread cookie recipe
- Piping tips (to pipe the words and to cut out the circles of the cassette tape)
- Piping bag
- Royal icing
- Cassette tape boxes
- Microplane, optional
- Make the cookie dough according to the instructions of your recipe and chill the dough for at least an hour. Between two sheets of parchment paper, roll out the chilled dough to 1/4-inch in thickness. Cut out rectangles that are 4 inches by 2.5 inches. Transfer the cutouts to a large lined baking sheet. Using the back of a piping tip (the larger round end), cut out two circles for the tape reels at almost the half-way mark of the short edge of the tape. If you have a cassette tape handy, hover it over your cutout to make sure the everything lines up. Transfer the baking sheet with the cutouts to the freezer for 15 minutes to help the dough firm up. A thoroughly chilled dough will ensure that the cookies will retain their shape when baking.
- Bake the cookies according to the instructions of your recipe. Allow the cookies to cool completely before decorating. If any of the edges are not straight, use a microplane to gently even out the sides.
- Fill a piping bag fitted with a small round piping tip with royal icing. Decorate the cookies with the details of a real cassette tape. Allow the icing to dry completely before placing into cassette tape box.
- Place cookies in cassette tape boxes and gift to your Valentine or favourite concert buddy!