Tomorrow I am volunteering at school again.  I am decorating cookies with the little ones and I just know we will have so much fun!!!  I went out and bought every type of sanding sugar and sprinkle I could find!!!  I came home and baked a huge batch of butter cookies and cut them out into snowflakes.  I went very simple but the flavor is so good!!!

These cookies have great flavor and texture.  They also hold their shape perfectly.  I can’t tell you how many recipes I’ve been through over the years looking for the perfect cookie for cutting out into shapes.  This is the one.  I have shared it before so I added the chocolate variation today.  It’s wonderful.  Deep chocolate flavor with a slight hint of espresso.  This recipe is the one you need if you have the urge to paint some cookies!

By the way, on a totally unrelated note…Penelope the pig is doing so much better!!!  She is back on her feet and exploring her world.  We are having so much fun with her!  She oinks (not loudly but really cute) while she is with me in the kitchen.  I love that oink!  I find myself smiling just watching her.  House training is going pretty well too!  She’s the smartest pig in all the word….ok maybe not the whole entire world but top three for sure!

It’s such a hectic time….let’s get right to the cookies shall we?  We can chat about Coco the hen and Penelope the pig getting to know each other over breakfast later!  Yes, that happened…

Butter cookie dough for cut cookies (both chocolate and vanilla)  Adapted from Cookie Craft

Yield

2 1/2 inch cookies ~ about 30

3 1/2 inch cookies ~ about 16

4 1/2 inch cookies ~ about 12

Ingredients

3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt (fine)

2 sticks of butter (softened)

1 cup sugar

1 large egg

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract plus the zest of 1 lemon

Directions

In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients and set aside.

Using a standing mixer cream together the butter and the sugar. Beat until light and fluffy.

Add the egg and the vanilla extract (and zest if using).  Mix until well blended.

Add the flour mixture (on low speed) mix until completely blended but no more.  you don’t want tough cookies!

Now,  lay a sheet of parchment paper on your counter.  Place the dough (in a neat ball) in the center of the paper.  Cover the dough with another sheet of parchment.  Roll the dough out to just over an 1/8th inch in thickness but not quite a 1/4 inch.  The dough should stay within the edges of the paper. Keep the paper smooth watch for ridges on both sides.

Move the now rolled out dough to your 1/2 size baking sheet (standard size).  Chill the dough for at least an hour.

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line your baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut your cookies into the desired shapes while the dough is still chilled (you get the sharpest edges that way).  Place the cookies with about an inch between them on the baking sheet and bake them until they are lightly golden around the edges.   The time will depend on the shape and size of the cookie.

*** For the Chocolate variation reduce the flour to 2 1/2 cups and add a 1/2 cup cocoa powder and 1 teaspoon of espresso powder.  Continue with the recipe as above.

I used a snowflake cutter today.  There are so many great cutters ( I own more than 50 myself)  I love cookie cutters!!!  The snowflake I chose today is a very simple one because 3 and 4 year olds will be doing the decorating.  These types of cutters can get really intricate.

before baking

After baking…see the golden edges? Less than that the cookies are to fragile, more than that they are over done and a little dry.

Here they are with the chocolate dough…which is so very good!!!!

I don’t love royal icing.  I really like the way it looks but I just don’t love the way it tastes.  How much fun is it to receive a cookie that is painted to perfection but doesn’t taste good?  It’s extremely important to me that the cookies taste like you want another.  That is key.  I use decorator icing.  It dries hard and tastes good.  Problem solved.

Decorator icing....can be tinted using food color paste.  The colors stay nice and bright.

1 cup confectioners sugar

2 teaspoons milk

2 teaspoons light corn syrup

1/4 teaspoon lemon extract or almond extract

paste food coloring of your choice

  1. In a small bowl, stir together confectioners’ sugar and milk until smooth. Beat in corn syrup and almond extract until icing is smooth and glossy. If icing is too thick, add more corn syrup.
  2. Divide into separate bowls, and add food colorings to each to desired intensity. Dip cookies, or paint them with a brush.
If you need to thin the icing you can add a little more milk.  Not too much though.
This icing also does a great job of serving as the glue for all the sparkles, sugars and decorations…..

Enjoy!

         

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14 Responses to The Holiday Collection ~ Snowflake Cookies…So simple but so festive….

  1. Charlotte Moore says:

    Beautiful rolled out cookies. I have never had good luck with rolled out cookies. I just use a scoop and drop them on a cookie sheet. I might just have to try these to see if I can do it.

    So good to hear Miss Penelope is doing well. Oink oink!!! Cute I am sure.

    I tried to find the Goya dough today but no luck. I will try again though.

    • Tamatha says:

      Try this recipe but roll the dough out between the two sheets of parchment. It changes everything! You may get hooked!! They are easy and really good. Collecting cookies cutters is fun too. You are such a good baker, yours will be perfect.

      Penelope is feeling great now. We are so thrilled!!! She explores and is full of personality. :)

      We may have to mail you some dough…you must try these pastries.

  2. They look really tasty. I love cookies, just not rolling them out. So I’m going to try a new trick. I’m taking the dough, making small balls with them and putting that in my tortilla press. Flatten, cut the shape I want and bingo, I have cookies. A walnut-sized ball should be just about right for most of my cookie cutters. Least waste and because I haven’t rolled the dough so much, they scraps at the end shouldn’t be so tough as they are when you use a roller. That’s the theory, at least. lol

    • Charlotte Moore says:

      I replied to your comment about the Johnnie Mozetti. Just not sure how to get you the recipe.

      • Tamatha says:

        Hi Charlotte, please feel free to post the recipe right here in the comment box. That way we can all enjoy your recipe. If you should decide to share more recipes I can create a log in for you and you can write full posts when you have the urge.

        I happily offer that to anyone interested in sharing good things.

        • Thanks, Charlotte and Tamatha!

          No I have several projects I really need to finish this week and don’t have time to do it (finishing knitting gauntlets for daughter. Friend from church will deliver them, but I’ve got to get it to her this week, before school’s out for Christmas break!)

          Oldest dd will come over next week and we’ll be making cookies then. I’m going to try it and then I’ll let you know how it worked.

          I know the pasta machine will let you adjust thickness. The tortilla press may not. But regular tortillas are about 1/8″ – 1/4″ thick. You can change it a little by how hard you squeeze the handle down.

          • Tamatha says:

            Please let me know how that technique works out. I really am so curious. My gosh you sound busy too!! Don’t forget to have fun. It’s all over so fast :)

          • The taking it easy part is why I’m not trying to do the cookies this week. The second gauntlet won’t take me that long, but I don’t want to over-commit myself. It will take me about 20 hrs to finish these gloves. Then I will send them Sunday with my daughter’s friend to school. I’m still unemployed, so it’s not like I have to do stuff around a work schedule – though I wish I DID have a job. But, I’m counting my blessings that I have a roof over my head and the time to do what I want to do. So…all is well.

          • Tamatha says:

            WOW!!!!! You keep very busy too!!!! If a new job is what you want then I will wish one for you in the New year. Positive thoughts can’t hurt. I hope you have a wonderful New Year with a job that makes you happy and meets your needs. Best wishes… :)

    • Tamatha says:

      Did you try that method today? How did it come out? I am so curious. I like rolling dough….I really never thought about why.

      Your idea sounds so interesting. Can you control the thickness?

  3. Susan says:

    I love cut out cookies, and these snowflakes look pretty perfect. You certainly are in full-steam ahead for the holidays with baking!

  4. Elena T says:

    I am so looking forward to making these for my family! This year all my Christmas baking has been from your recipes! They are fantastic! So glad I stumbled upon this blog!

    For Thanksgiving we made your pear and almond cake, it was delicious! And will now be a firm favorite! I’m sure these cookies will be too!

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