Saturday, October 25, 2008

Halloween Sugar Cookies

Well, it is getting closer and closer to my second favorite holiday of the year! I love Halloween! I love the decorations, the costumes, the scary movies (my scary movies consist mostly of Disney's Blackbeard's Ghost and The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad), and making sugar cookies. I have made sugar cookies with my family since I was born. Dustin, however, does not get as excited about this as I do. But at least until I have children he is going to have to deal with it and treat this tradition as one of his own. He was pretty much acting like the Halloween Scrooge at the beginning but eventually I got him into the kitchen to decorate with me.

Being also that we are both artists (Dustin more than me) we always find that decorating anything becomes a bit of a competition. Which one can have the most creative cookie? I am pretty sure Dustin won with his black and orange striped cat but I was pretty proud of my ghost.

Don't forget to decorate your cookies this Halloween! If you don't have a good sugar cookie recipe this one from Joy of Baking is pretty good.

Sugar Cookies:

3 1/2 cups (490 grams) all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon (4 grams) baking powder

1 cup (227 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/2 cups (300 grams) granulated white sugar

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

For Sugar Cookies: In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.

In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 3 to 4 minutes). Add the eggs and vanilla extract and beat until combined. Add the flour mixture and beat until you have a smooth dough.

Divide the dough in half and wrap each half in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for about one hour or until firm enough to roll.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Remove one half of the chilled dough from the refrigerator and, on a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/4 inch (1 cm). (Keep turning the dough as you roll, making sure the dough does not stick to the counter.) Cut out desired shapes using a lightly floured cookie cutter and transfer cookies to the prepared baking sheet. Place the baking sheets with the unbaked cookies in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes to chill the dough which prevents the cookies from spreading and losing their shape while baking.

Note: If you are not going to frost the baked cookies, you may want to sprinkle the unbaked cookies with crystal or sparkling sugar.

Bake cookies for about 10 minutes (depending on size) or until they are brown around the edges. Remove from oven and let c
ookies cool on baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling. Frost with royal icing, if desired. Be sure to let the royal icing dry completely before storing. (This may take several hours.)

Frosted cookies will keep several days in an airtight container. Store between layers of parchment paper or wax paper.

Makes about 36 - 4 inch (10 cm) cookies.

1 comment:

  1. The cutest Halloween cookies I've ever seen!