Sugar Cookies

Baking sugar cookies is the perfect way to get everyone in the family together in the kitchen.

With an easy-to-handle dough, it takes no time to cut sugar cookies into interesting shapes to suit any season or occasion. This leaves plenty of time for the real fun—icing and decorating!
Ingredients :

· 3/4 cup butter, softened
· 1 cup granulated or packed brown sugar
· 1 egg
· 1 tsp. vanilla
· 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
· 1/2 tsp. baking powder
· pinch of salt

(Cooking Measurements)

Cooking Procedures :

1. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Prepare a parchment paper-lined or greased baking sheets. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy. Beat in sugar in three additions. Beat in egg and vanilla.

3. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. Using a woodenspoon, stir into butter mixture in three additons.

4. Divide dough in half and then flatten slightly. Wrap each half in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least an hour or for up to 24 hours.

5. On lightly floured surface, roll out each half of dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Using 3 inch cookie cutter, cut out shapes. Place the cookie shapes on the prepared baking sheets 1 inch apart.

6. Place the baking sheets in the center of the oven and bake for about 10 minutes or until light golden on the bottom and edges of the cookies.

7. Remove from the oven and let it cool. Decorate as desired.

8. Makes about 36 cookies.

Cookie Wands
Use 3 inch star cookie cutter to cut out shapes. Place marble-size piece of dough on parchment paper-lined or greased baking sheet.

Place lollipop stick or wooden craft stick into dough. Place star cookie cutout over top, pressing lightly to stick dough together.

Sprinkle with gold dust. Bake as directed.

Jam-Filled Cookies
Use 3 inch star cookie cutter to cut out shapes. Use mini cutter to cut hole in center of half of the unbaked cookies for tops. Bake as directed.

Spread about 1/2 tsp. raspberry jam over middle of each whole cookie. Dust tops with icing sugar and place over jam. For 18 cookies, you`ll need about 1/3 cup jam.

Stained Glass Cookies
Use 3 inch cookie cutter to cut out shapes. Use mini cutter for cutouts. Place on parchment paper-lined or greased foil-lined baking sheet.

Separating colors, crush 1/3 cup clear hard candies. Spoon into holes, mounding slightly. Bake as directed.

Let it cool on pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to rack. Let cool completely to let candy harden.

Coat cookie with melted chocolate or Icing Paint recipe. While first coat is still wet, pipe on stripes in contrasting color of chocolate , Icing Paint or Piping Icing. Lightly drag toothpick or tip of small knife crosswise in straight lines through stripes.

Chocolate Dip and Drizzle
Dip cookie halfway into 6 oz. melted semisweet chocolate. Scrape bottom against rim of rim of bowl to remove excess. Place on waxed paper-lined baking sheet. Dip fork into 3 oz. melted white or milk chocolate and drizzle over cookie with back-and-forth motion.

Divide and tint Icing Paint recipe. Using small paintbrushes or wooden craft sticks, paint on base color. Let dry completely before adding details in other colors. For less distinct, softer edges (as in green tree), paint on details while first coat is wet.

Piping and Candies
Divide and tint Piping Icing recipe to use over dried base color. Spoon into piping bag fitted with plain tip, over over icing. Holding bag at twist, squeeze out icing with slow even pressure, holding tip between thumb and forefinger to guide flow of icing. Press sprinkles or candies into icing while still moist.

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