Monday, March 14, 2011
Rolled Sugar Cookies
While I love experimenting with new flavors, I also think that classics are classics for a reason. The gooey comfort of a chocolate chip cookie, the crisp buttery goodness of shortbreads, the creamy vanilla flavor of sugar cookies...yup, there are many reasons that we return to the classics again and again.
It's really quick to make the dough, and as it needs to be chilled ahead of time, it's really easy to do different parts during several pockets of precious free time. For example, I spent 15 minutes making the dough one day, another 15 rolling and cutting it the next day, and another 10 minutes just popping it into the oven and baking it later that evening.
This is probably my favorite sugar cookie recipe - it uses all butter (I hate shortening) and is really easy to roll out. I think it has the perfect crisp-outside-chewy-inside texture - I'm not a fan of the cakey grocery store sugar cookies. I like it better after it's been sitting around for a couple of days, as it gets softer as time goes by. I actually transcribed the recipe while watching Martha Stewart (which is weird, because I never watch it). It's actually pretty entertaining, as her guest was just enamored by Martha and Martha wasn't really interested in her guest's stories of how much she loves her work. I thought it was kind of funny. I love Martha's recipes, but I can't be the only one who finds her a bit abrasive, right?
Rolled Sugar Cookies
Adapted from Martha Stewart
2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons milk
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Beat in the egg, vanilla, and milk. Add the flour mixture and mix until thoroughly combined.
Divide the dough into two disks, cover in plastic wrap, and chill for at least an hour or up to three days.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Flour your rolling area and rolling pin. Roll the dough until 1/8 inch thick. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters, occasionally dipping them in flour to avoid sticking. Try to cut out as much as possible at one time, as the dough gets tougher each time you re-roll it.
Bake for about 10 minutes, until lightly golden. Transfer to wire racks to cool.