Last up for Christmas Cookie Week are these awesome sugar cookies - they are the best I've had. Their texture is perfect, they are dense and sweet, and not at all dry. The icing is just as sweet as it should be, it's the perfect complement. Be sure to let the dough chill enough, it makes it so much easier to work with.
I opted for some simple decorations this year, I didn't have a lot of time or cookie cutters. Hearts are big here in Denmark at Christmas time, and I found some dried raspberry flakes to decorate them with. They were a bit sour, and the contrast with the sweet cookie was awesome - they went very well with my disco ball Christmas trees.
A professional cookie decorator I am not, but a great tip I use for smoothing the icing is to put the iced cookies back in a hot oven for a few seconds before adding any decorations.
The Ultimate Sugar Cookie
for the cookies:
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ cups butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 large egg - lightly beaten
- 2 tablespoon heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
for the icing:
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- ½ cup butter
- 5 tablespoon milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- food coloring - optional
to make the cookies:
- In a large bowl, whisk the flour with the salt and baking powder, then set aside.
- In a separate bowl, using an electric mixer, cream together the butter and the sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Add in the beaten egg, the cream and vanilla and mix until combined, then add in the flour mixture in several additions.
- Divide the dough in half, form into balls, then cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour.
- Heat the oven to 350 F (175 C).
- Lightly flour a surface, and roll out the chilled dough to about ⅛" thick, then cut into desired shapes and move to a baking sheet covered in baking paper.
- Bake for about 10 minutes, or until lightly golden - be careful that they don't brown too much.
- Let cool on cookie sheet for about 5 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely before icing and decorating as desired.
for the icing:
- In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, cream together the butter and powdered sugar until smooth, then gradually add in the milk and vanilla until smooth and stiff, about 5 minutes.
- Color with food coloring if desired.