Sugar Cookie Recipe and icing (10 decorating styles to come)

9 December 2013


Happy Monday! I hope your December is merry and bright! We’ve had our first snow this weekend (here) and it’s the perfect backdrop for decking our halls, baking, making and …. partaking! Are you doing the same? In Sweden, this week brings the Nobel Dinner (here), Lucia (here) and general Christmas hustle and bustle! 

I was reminded recently by a friend of the year I made cookie packages + hand delivered them to my biggest clients around town in one of my first years in Sweden! These days, I find baking to be tricky
business  — just finding the time — but, I want the kids to have the same memories.  I return to this sugar cookie recipe that always works. In addition to making great tasting, easy to roll out cookies, these cookies only need to be chilled for 30 minutes, but, are also OK if well chilled over night.  Rather than making a large variety of Christmas Cookies I really enjoy finding new ways of decorating —  in fact, I’ve counted and we have at least 10 different ways we decorate!  This past weekend, we’ve decorated our first double batch and will bring 10 styles for you* over the next weeks. I can’t wait and hope it’s fun for you, too!
Special Subscriber note: If you are a subscriber, I have a little present: no waiting. If you are a current subscriber or become one by tomorrow at midnight, you will receive a special email with all 10 varieties before I post them here at willowday.
Sugar Cookie
2 C Flour (272 g)
1/4 t. Salt
1/2 t Baking Powder
1/2 Lb butter (114 g)
1 cup sugar (201 g)
1 egg
2 T cognac (optional)
1/2 t Vanilla Extract

Sift all together dry ingredients. Cream butter and sugar until light: add egg, cognac (optional), vanilla and beat well. Add dry ingredients, a little at a time, and mix until well blended. Wrap and chill the dough for at least 30 minutes before rolling.

Preheat thr oven to 400F. Roll to about 1/8 inch thick. Cut into shapes with cookie cutters. Bake approximaxtely 10 minutes. Do not allow to brown. Cool and decorate.

This first cut out is decorated straight out of my childhood. When we were very little, my mother would carefully decorate each cookie with heavy dollops of buttercream frosting that we each could cover with sprinkles. These take my right back to being a kid and are so easy to do with a group. As we graduated to the status of big kids, we all received our own bowl of icing which we sometimes colored and sprinkled creatively. Happy Making!

Icing Recipe #1: Butter Cream Icing:1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened (113 g)
6 to 8 cups confectioners’ sugar (750 g – 1,000 g)
1/2 cup milk (120 ml)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine butter, 4 cups sugar, milk, and vanilla and beat at medium. This will take about 3 – 5 minutes. Gradually add remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time until you reach the desired consistency.

Icing Recipe #1: Quick Cookie of Icing:  (Small Quantity)
2 C Confectioners Sugar
2 T Milk
1 t Vanilla Extract
2 T melted butter
Carefully cut melted butter into the confectioners sugar. Add 2-4 T milk and vanilla and beat at high speed until spreading consistency.