Just in time for Christmas cookie plates, an oh-so-pretty and easy-to-work-with roll-out sugar cookie dough that makes festive Christmas Stars, red and white and sparkly silver. No icing required!
Let the holiday baking begin!
For a while now, I’ve tried to find ‘my’ recipe for rolled sugar cookies, the cut-out cookies that add such a festive look to Christmas cookie plates.
Little did I know that the recipe – at minimum, a contender – would come right from my family’s cookbook and my dear Auntie Gloria.
Let me tell you about this wonder woman, my aunt. She tossed off the label of ‘disabled’ even after losing an arm in a childhood accident. Somehow she managed to play tennis and curl; diaper babies (with safety pins, people!); knit, crochet and sew; host huge family dinners and be-costumed parties. Somehow she managed to entwine ropes of sugar cookie dough, one red, one white, to form the prettiest little candy cane cookies you can imagine, a sweet cookie favorite from my own childhood.
Mine? Even made with two arms, my candy cane cookies looked like they were made in a kindergarten classroom.
In the face of crafty-cookie defeat? Improvise! I’m so glad I did for these little red and white cookie stars are every so pretty, don’t you agree?! They rolled beautifully and kept their shape.
More than that, I think Auntie Gloria will be proud of my adaptation when I deliver a big tin of Banana Oatmeal Cookies, Fat Rascals, Frosty Christmas Trees (my favorite chocolate-y spice-y roll-out cookie recipe), Elise’s Maple Cookies (which caused two grown men and otherwise civilized men to nearly come to blows over the last cookie) and two brand-new recipes to the nursing home where she is convalescing after a long hospital stay.
Let the holiday cookie eating begin!
I'm entering this long-time favorite family Christmas recipe into a contest at Bon Appetit. If you'd like to vote for my cookie, you'll find it in 'cookies' though it might take a day or so for the entry to be posted there.
COLORED ROLL-OUT SUGAR COOKIES:
especially CHRISTMAS STARS
Chill time: several hours
Hands-on time: 1 hour to bake
Time to table: 6 hours
Makes about 8 dozen mini stars or 4 dozen medium-size cut-out cookies
- 1 cup salted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 1-1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2-1/2 cups flour, fluffed to aerate before measuring or 455 grams
- 1 teaspoon table salt
- Food coloring
- 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract, optional
- Flour or powdered sugar for rolling
- Silver dragees
MIX Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy with an electric mixer. Add the egg, almond extract and vanilla and combine well. Mix in the flour and salt. Divide the dough in half, mix food coloring and peppermint extract into one half. Form doughs into disks, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm.
ROLL & BAKE Preheat oven to 375F. Dust a counter with flour or powdered sugar. Break off about 1/3 of one disk, dust all over. Roll out and cut into shapes, arrange on a baking sheet covered with parchment, no need to allow for spreading.
FOR STARS Roll a small dab of dough of the other color and place in the center of the star. Top with dragees.
BAKE Bake for 8 to 10 minutes until the edges are just barely beginning to brown. Let cool for a few minutes, then transfer to paper towels to finish cooling.
ALANNA'S TIPS I like sugar cookies to taste like more than sugar and butter. So I add a little extract, often lemon extract but here, to match the red and white theme, peppermint. Since ‘more flour’ makes cookies tough, I like to dust the counter with powdered sugar, not flour, before rolling. The sugar ‘bakes in’ to the cookies and so completely disappears.
More Recipes for Holiday Cookie Plates
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