Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Sugar Cookies

It's that time of year...the time when I search for the best sugar cookie recipe I can find. This year I found a keeper. I really love this recipe because you don't have to wait for the butter to come to room temperature. That is key because I never plan ahead enough for that to happen. I always work on the fly...if the kids are happy and my hands are free then I bake. Today my hands were free so I grabbed some butter from the freezer and got to work.
This simple recipe bakes a batch of tender sugar cookies that don't last long around here. We baked a couple dozen and hardly had any left by the time I got around to snapping a few picture. We invited the neighbors over to decorate cookies. The kids ate a bunch while decorating, we gave a few away, we ate some more, we gave some to my guitar teacher, and then we ate a few more. It's a good thing this recipe makes a big batch of dough, because we can cut off a big chunk of dough and have terrific cookies anytime we want them.
Sugar Cookies
1 1/2 cup butter melted
2 cups white granulated sugar
4 eggs (jumbo)
1 teaspoons baking soda
1 tbs almond extract
5 cups of flour
Melt the butter in a small saucepan or in the microwave. Whisk in the sugar. Beat in the eggs and almond extract once the butter/sugar mixture has cooled enough so that it won't scramble the eggs. Mix the flour and baking soda. Add a bit at a time (I used the paddle attachment on my KitchenAid and just let it whirl around 5 or 6 times before adding another big scoop of flour.) Chill for about 2 hours in the fridge.Roll out about 1/4 inch thick on a floured board, cut, and place on baking sheets lined with parchment. Bake at 35o for 8-10 minutes. Cookies will be a very light golden at the edges. Let them completely cool and then decorate with icing and sprinkles.
2 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup cream cheese, softened
Food coloring
Whip together with the mixer. Separate and color as desired.

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