Friday, August 12, 2011

Sugar Cookies & Glaze Icing

I just finished making 200 sugar cookies for a wedding reception, and thought I would share the recipe on here for what I consider to be the best sugar cookies ever! These cookies are soft, buttery, and perfect! I got this recipe from, and have copied the following post directly from their website. (My own comments are in red.)

1 C real butter (no substitutions!)
1 C sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp almond extract (you could use vanilla instead but use almond if you can - it's amazing!)
3 C flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy- about 2 minutes. Add in eggs and extract and mix to incorporate.

In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt and whisk to combine. It's important that you measure the flour properly - spoon the flour into the measuring cup and then level off the top. If you scoop the flour up the amount will be different and could make the cookies dry. Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix until completely combined.

Shape the dough into 2 flat disks and wrap in waxed paper and place in the fridge to chill for 1-2 hours. If you want your cookies to hold their shape well, the dough needs to be chilled properly. A great tip to speed things up is to immediately roll dough between 2 sheets of waxed paper and place on a flat surface in the fridge. It will chill super fast and be ready to go in no time. I highly recommend rolling the dough between 2 sheets of waxed paper. It took me a bit of practice at first, figuring out how to hold the wax paper down so it wouldn't slide while rolling, but once I got the hang of it it was fast and easy. And then when you remove the dough from the fridge, it's time to cut into cookies and bake immediately. This helps the cookies retain their shape better, because the dough is colder, and it means NO FLOURING the countertop - so much cleaner and faster!

When you're ready to roll out dough lightly sprinkle flour onto your work surface and roll out dough with a rolling pin. (Unless you followed the wax paper tip from above.)

Bake at 350 for 8-12 minutes. The baking time really depends on how you like them. If you like them really soft under-bake them. This is how I like them so I baked them for 8 minutes - perfection! However if you're making large cookies, or ones with small parts or heavy frosting, you might want to be careful because they might break when they're super soft.

About 8 minutes will get you a really soft cookie, a few minutes longer (when they start to just brown around the edges) and you'll get just a little crispiness around the edges and then a soft center, bake even longer (and roll thinner) and you'll get a buttery, crispy cookie that will just melt in your mouth. Any way you do it, they'll taste good. Remove onto cooling racks when you're done and let cool completely. I honestly think these even taste better the second day.

I love this delicious icing recipe because it dries hard enough that the cookies can be stacked and/or individually wrapped. On the other hand, it's not rock hard like royal frosting, so when you bite into the cookies it's still nice and soft and chewy.

Glacé Icing

1 lb powdered sugar (about 3 3/4 C)
6T whole milk (low-fat actually works, but use whole if you can)
6T light Corn Syrup (6T is equal to 1/4 C plus another 2 T)
1 t extract (I use almond because I use almond in my sugar cookies)

With a whisk, combine sugar and milk until smooth (no lumps!) Then stir in corn syrup and extract.

You will use this same recipe for both glazing and piping. The way it is right now is the consistency you want for glazing. It’s smooth and thin, it easily runs off the whisk in a pretty thin drizzle.

To prepare the icing for piping, you just add more powdered sugar. Just eyeball it. You can’t really mess it up because if it’s too thick you just add more milk and if it’s too thin, you add more powdered sugar. I add it in small amounts until it’s a good consistency. For me, it’s when it gets to a point where it’s relatively hard to whisk it by hand. When I pick up the whisk, it still runs off, but in a very slow, thick stream now.

Take your glazing icing and separate it into bowls if you want to color it. I decided to do red (more pink, but I love it!), green, and blue. And I left my piping icing white. Use gel food coloring (you can find it at craft or cooking stores) for more intense colors.

There are many ways to decorate you cookies at this point. I suggest looking at the ideas on for inspiration, or just decorate as you wish! ENJOY!

I've also used this recipe to make cookie-pops. You can see them here. Such fun!

P.S. This cookies freeze really well! In fact, I almost like them better after being frozen!! I've even frozen them frosted, and they have worked very well.

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