Tuesday, December 10, 2013

OT: Favorite Holiday Recipes: SUGAR COOKIES

Sugar Cookies



3 cups flour (I substituted 1 1/2 cups with soy flour... it cuts the carbs a little, as if that would make                                          any difference this time of year)
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 1/2 sticks butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 large egg
1 Tbsp whole milk (why don't they sell this in those little containers???)
1 tsp vanilla extract


I have to say, this is one of those recipes that makes me fall in love with my KitchenAid stand mixer all over again.

Combine flour(s), baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

Beat butter and sugar in a separate bowl (or in your stand mixer) on low speed until combined, increase speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat on medium until combined. Beat in milk and vanilla.

Slowly beat dry ingredients into wet on low speed. (This is when I had some interesting flour-cloud effects in the kitchen. It didn't really bother me, and actually made me feel productive in a messy kind of way.) Increase speed to medium-high and beat until the dough begins to clump. Scrape dought into plastic wrap. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.

I made three different types of cookies with this recipe. All of them call for 375 degree ovens.

In brief:

CHOCOLATE-DIPPED COOKIES

Roll out on confectioner's sugar and use your favorite holiday cookie cutters. Bake the cookies, on parchment, 11-13 minutes (until just beginning to turn golden on the edges) and thoroughly cool.

Put some chocolate chips (I used dark chocolate) in a bowl and microwave in short segments (20-25 seconds), stirring after each, until just melted. Using the back of the spoon, spread the melted chocolate over roughly half of each cookie, then sprinkle with either crushed peppermint candy or shredded coconut.


MARSHMALLOW-JAM SANWICHES

Do the confectioner's sugar thing, and cut out 2-3" rounds with a cookie cutter or glass. Make an even number. Set them out on parchment and sprinkle with whatever you'd like. I used chocolate sprinkles because I'm a chocolate kind of girl and those are what I had on hand. Bake them the same as above.

Once they're cooled, turn the cookies over and spread half of them with marshmallow fluff or cream, and the other half with your favorite jam or preserves and sandwich them together.


SALTED CARAMEL THUMBPRINTS (my favorite)

Roll the chilled bowl into 1-inch (or smaller) balls, then roll each ball in beaten egg white, then in finely chopped peanuts and pretzels. Put them on your parchment lined cookie sheet and make an indentation in the middle of each with your thumb. (You might have to reconnect bits of the dough if it splits.) Cut chewy caramel candies in half, and put one-half in each indentation. This will need about 20 minutes to bake, until just brown around the edges.



It's all better with friends.

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