Hello! When I started this blog I believe I stated I would supply a recipe here or there, but have yet to do so. I'll rectify that oversight now!
Like many a mom before and after me, I wanted our daughter to have the fun of cookie decorating - the kind that are rolled out and cut with cookie cutters. However, I didn't want the hassle of having to make dough that to be chilled ahead of time, doughs that were too soft even after being chilled and so on. But then I encountered the following recipe on the back of the set of Wilton cookie cutters I was buying. Here's the recipe:
1 cup (two sticks) softened butter
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 cups flour
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in egg and vanilla. Add baking powder and flour, one cup at a time, mixing after each addition. The dough will be very stiff. Do not chill.
Divide dough into two balls. On a floured surface, roll each ball into a circle about 12" diameter and 1/8" thick. Dip cookie cutters in flour before each use. Bake cookies on ungreased cookie sheet until lightly browned. Baking time will vary from 4-12 minutes, depending on size of cookie.
I've used this recipe many, many times now and it's always worked really well. Occasionally I've had to add a bit more flour, but as the dough isn't chilled, it's easy to tell right away when the proper consistency has been reached.
1/2 of the dough yielded 30 cookies for me last night; that was fine as I needed two dozen to take for refreshments after our daughter's Orchestra concert tonight. I used my two leaf-shaped cookie cutters, buttercream frosting and various fall-themed cookie sprinkles. Here's how they turned out:
I know, the leaf shapes aren't the best - they're supposed to be an oak leaf and a maple leaf, I think. Still look nice, though, with their sprinkles!
A close-up of two oak leaf cookies.
Two dozen cookies ready to go to the concert. The plate was a dime at a church rummage sale - a nicer presentation than a paper plate but if accidentally left behind, I would be out only that dime.
When we arrived at the school, the woman in charge told me, "You made an effort - not everyone did" and removed brownies on a paper plate from a prominent spot on the table and put my plate of cookies in their place. I got puffed up a little with pride at this, but after the concert was over, I noticed that there were still two cookies on my plate - and the brownies were gone. I guess chocolate wins every time!
Oh well, it's still a good recipe, and besides, I had fun using those colored sprinkles. (I've gotten them at Amish grocery stores in PA, IL and IN).