sugar cookies decorated

Since today is National Cookie Day (yes, there really is such a thing), I decided to try a new cookie recipe.  I made them last night and sent them to school for Journey’s class to enjoy.

To keep it simple, I chose this sugar cookie recipe from Martha Stewart because I already had all of the ingredients.  Plus, I didn’t want to be up late baking cookies on a school night.

Basic Sugar Cookies

Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Assorted candies, sprinkles, or colored sugars, for decorating (optional)

Cook’s Note
Use flour on utensils to keep dough from sticking: Dip the cookie cutters, and dust the spatula before transferring uncooked dough to a sheet. Rolling dough between two sheets of floured parchment will keep it from sticking to the rolling pin.

Directions:

1.  In large bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, and salt. With an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla.

2.  With mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture; beat until combined.

3.  Use your hands to form a dough ball.  Divide dough in half; flatten into disks. Wrap each in plastic; freeze until firm, at least 20 minutes, or place in a resealable plastic bag, and freeze up to 3 months (thaw in refrigerator overnight).

4.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment. Remove one dough disk; let stand 5 to 10 minutes.  If it is still too hard to roll, let it stand for a few more minutes.

5.  Roll out 1/8 inch thick between two sheets of floured parchment, dusting dough with flour as needed.

6.  Cut shapes with cookie cutters. Using a spatula, transfer to prepared baking sheets. (If dough gets soft and starts to crumble, chill for 5 or 10 minutes.) Reroll scraps; cut shapes. Repeat with remaining dough.

7.  Bake, rotating halfway through, until edges are golden, 10 to 18 minutes (depending on size). The cookies should be very light, not brown.  Cool completely on wire racks.

sugar cookies plain

8.  You can make your own cookie icing or try Wilton Cookie Icing (you can find at Michael’s or JoAnn Fabric).  To ice cookies, spread with the back of a spoon. Let the icing harden, about 20 minutes. Decorate as desired.

Happy Cookie Day!

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