Lara’s Sugar Cookies 400* 8-10 mins
(Named after my daughter’s imaginary childhood friend because we don’t remember where the recipe came from originally, but we fondly remember Lara)
- 1 c butter, room temperature
- 1 ½ c sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 6 Tbs milk (measure into a small glass)
- 4 ½ c flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Mix butter with sugar, add eggs then add in vanilla. In a separate bowl measure out the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add some flour mixture to butter mixture and continue adding & mixing alternating with the milk. The dough should be somewhat soft. It will absorb more flour as you knead and roll it out before cutting and baking. (If you want to make different colors of dough separate and add color now.)
- Layout two lengths of wax paper (or one for each color) about 24 inches long. Spoon ½ of batter onto each sheet of wax paper. Form semi-log form, making sure you can wrap wax paper all around the dough. Twist secure the ends. Place in the fridge for at least 1 hour. You can leave overnight. We’ve never made it past that!
- The best cookie cutters are the ones that are just an open shape. We have a deep drawer full of many holiday shapes and several random ones we just like. And with creativity, the baby foot becomes a UNC Tarheel, the heart becomes a Santa face and so on.
- Flour your surface and rolling pin – I keep a small pile of four close by. Take a chunk of dough and roll out to about ¼ inch thickness. You do not want them too thin or they will be too crispy. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters, but be sure to fill the cookie sheet with shapes similar in size so they bake the correct amount of time. Usually takes 8-10 mins. You do not want them browning. Remove from oven and place cookies on cooling racks. Once cooled they are ready for icing & decorating.
- Now here’s the secret to the best cookies ever staying so moist. You flip the cookies over and you ice the side that was next to the pan! The top is closed but the bottom of the cookie has a porous covering and your icing goes in and seals it off all the while making it softer. We outline them with Wilton tubed icing using #7 tip and fill in with runny icing we make ourselves. This is another reason you do not want to make them too thin. There are many recipes out on the web and Pinterest, but I just take about 1 Tbs butter, 1 tsp vanilla or almond and a 2 lb bag of confectioners’ sugar. I gradually add milk until icing is thin enough to run off the spoon. You want the consistency to be somewhere between syrup and molasses. Then we separate into smaller prep bowls and add coloring and small spoons. Load the table with sprinkles, some toothpicks to design with and let the creativity begin! You can see why it’s an all-day event and we invite folks to stop in to make a cookie or two themselves.