decorating sugar cookies
Making sugar cookies… I’m not going to gloss over the truth- sugar cookies take a long time but ONLY because there are so many steps. So, plan ahead (a few days) and you’ll have a creative, enjoyable experience. Since the dough needs to be refrigerated for at least an hour or up to 3 days, make it ahead of time, (in the morning or the day before) and even roll out and bake the cookies as a separate event (in the morning or the day before) so finally decorating feels less like a marathon and more like a stage race.
3/4 cup butter (I hate margarine so I’m not going to even say it here)
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
In large bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and 1 cup sugar until creamy; beat in eggs and vanilla. In another bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and salt; gradually add to butter mixture, blending thoroughly, to form a soft dough. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm (at least one hour) or for up to 3 days.
On a floured board, roll out dough, a portion at a time, to a thickness of 1/8 inch (keep remaining portions refrigerated). Cut out with cookie cutters and place slightly apart on ungreased baking sheets.
Bake at 400 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Transfer to racks and let cool completely before handling. Store airtight. Makes about 4 dozen.
Creamy Vanilla Frosting
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup butter softened
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
about 4 tablespoons of milk
Mix powdered sugar and butter. Stir in vanilla and milk. Beat until smooth and spreading consistency.
*I made the frosting runny (for stiffer frosting add only 2 tablespoons of milk) and put it into decorating bags. For the smooth-edge look when decorating the cookies draw the perimeter of the area you want to fill in with the frosting bag (small round tip) and then fill in the area.
**For the glasses I used pre-made frosting from the store, it comes in a small tube and is meant for writing.
I like baking but I can’t (I mean shouldn’t) eat all of the finished products, this is true in just about every case- not just desserts, so giving the treats away is the idea situation. My family and I get our fill of treat making and get to share the love. I love getting handmade treats too, the gift of someone’s time is much appreciated (that may or may not have been a hint, wink wink).
This year we made this process a ‘marathon event’ and as it was getting late I told my daughter to stop helping and get ready for bed. Instead of complaining it was time for bed she thanked me. Live and learn!
So glad we all survived the end of the world, now let’s hope we can survive Christmas!