Last week was my friend Beth’s birthday and Beth loves sugar cookies. I gave her a Christmas box full of goodies like rugelach, almond espresso meringue sandwich cookies, macaroons, fudge and what did she rave about? The sugar cookies.
Now I love Beth and I’m only saying this because Beth is a techno-phobe so I’m pretty confident she will never see this….but of all the wonderful, sugar packed, buttery sweets, sugar cookies have got to be my least favorite.
There I said it.
I feel better already
OK, I know they are pretty and can be oohed and ahhed over but the truth is they are a whole lotta work for something I’ll probably just eat one of. And, as fate would have it, the kids have a snow day today, Gabe has decided to cut a new tooth and my husband is doing our taxes. Today has turned out to be the worst day to stand bent over cookie shapes, tediously stirring water into bowls of sugar to get the right consistency. Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?!
But since Beth loves sugar cookies and I love Beth, I’ll be making sugar cookies today.
4. Roll out dough
Cut into fun shapes
5. Bake and cool
6. Whisk meringue powder, water and sugar (and one or two other things) to start the icing
Transfer to a standing mixer and beat (a long time) to achieve a beautiful smooth creamy icing
Get decorations ready and practice icing on parchment paper
Pipe icing around edges
(Recipe Courtesy of Paula Deen for food network)
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Royal Icing, see Sweetopia for recipe and http://sweetopia.net/2009/09/how-to-decorate-cookies-with-royal-icing-top-10-tips/ for tips on how to decorate cookies. I could tell you, but she does such a good job
1. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy.
2. Beat in eggs, and vanilla and almond extract until combined.
3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add to sugar mixture, beating until smooth. Wrap dough in heavy duty plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour.
4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut with assorted cookie cutters and place 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Chill dough for 15 minutes.
5. Bake for 10 minutes, or until edges are very lightly browned. Let cool for 2 minutes on baking sheet. Remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks.
6. Make royal icing recipe as found at above link. (the kids are home, remember? I have limited time to write out all this!)
About the only time I don’t mind making sugar cookies is when they are part of a theme and can be brought to a fabulous party like the one seen here from karas party ideas,