December 20, 2011

Cut Out Christmas Cookies (edited to add the frosting I used)

I'm about half way done with holiday baking - about 11 (?) items made so far.   Yesterday I finished decorating the sugar cookies (snowflakes pictured above) and the cake balls.  I have numerous cookies, English Toffee and another candy to make yet but today?  Today would be perfect for baking but I'm soooo tired.  Literally.  I'm procrastinating against doing, well, pretty much everything!

I'm thinking a little freshly made coffee and a walk out to the mailbox is in order to wake me up and then?  Onward to more holiday baking for the goody trays!

Sugar Cookies

1 1/2 c granulated sugar
1 1/2 c butter, soft
2 eggs
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
4 c flour
1 t baking soda
1 t cream of tartar
1 t salt

Combine sugar and butter, beat until creamy with your electric mixer. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat well. Add dry ingredients and mix until blended. Chill dough until it's easy to work with; 30-60 minutes.

On lightly floured surface roll the dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut out cookies. Bake on lined baking sheets at 350 until the edges just start to turn golden brown, about 10 minutes. Cool on wire racks.  Decorate as you desire.

Your wish is my command!  The comments below asked what frosting I used on the snowflake cookies.  They are both recipes I've posted on the site before but I'm pasting them here for easy access.  The first is the base coat glaze I put on the cookies and the second is a basic royal icing recipe I use for the swirls and lines of the snowflakes. 

Icing Glaze for the Base Coat
Makes about 1 & 1/3 cups

2 1/2 c powdered sugar
2 T water
1 T butter, softened
1 T light corn syrup
1/2 t almond extract or vanilla
Food color, if desired

Combine powdered sugar, water, butter, corn syrup and vanilla in small mixer bowl; mix until powdered sugar is moistened. Beat at medium speed until smooth, adding additional water if necessary to reach desired spreading consistency. Tint with food color, if desired.  Glaze cooled cookies and let stand until hardened (6 hrs. or overnight).

Royal Icing Swirls - Frosting

4 c confectioners' sugar
3 large egg whites
1/2 t cream of tartar
1/2 t vanilla
1 T water

Beat 4-6 minutes on high.  (Add more or less water depending on stiff it is and how stiff you want it).  Will be very hard when it dries.


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