Everyone needs a go-to sugar cookie recipe. This particular one is meant specifically for rolled sugar cookies. The recipe makes an easy to work with dough, ideal for using with cookie cutters. Feeling creative? This dough is forgiving. Just knead it, form it into a ball with your hands and roll back out. I haven’t tried making your average round fluffy sugar cookies with the recipe though. Consider yourself forewarned. Also, the icing makes these cookies highly addictive. I had at least 10 last night. Just sayin’.
So. What’s with the Oscar cookies? Well, the Oscars were last night and naturally I couldn’t resist making Oscar shaped cookies. Just couldn’t help myself. I have a problem. First step is admitting it. The Oscar cookie cutter isn’t in fact an Oscar cookie cutter. It’s advertised as a mummy cookie cutter on Copper Gifts (www.coppergifts.com). Very worth it though in my book. Copper Gifts makes a wide variety of high quality cookie cutters if you’re on the prowl for one in particular. Check it out. The flat rate $7 shipping is a bit of a drag though, especially if you’re just ordering one thing. I’ll probably only use the “mummy” cookie cutter once a year, but the amount of excitement these cookies brought to my Sunday was totally worth it. Want to make them for an Oscar party next year? Or just for fun? Use yellow food coloring in the icing. After you ice the cookies, let them dry and spray Wilton’s gold color mist over them for a nice metallic shine. You can find the food color spray online or in craft stores like Michael’s or AC Moore. I happened to find it in a local baking store, so if you have one nearby I recommend checking there first. There’s a high probability they’ll carry Wilton products, not to mention supporting local baking stores is the way to go! Oh, and the popcorn bucket? I took one home with me from the movie theater. Classy, I know.
rolled sugar cookies
useful gadgets: stand mixer, rolling pin, cookie cutter, squeeze bottle
for the sugar cookies:
1 ½ sticks butter (3/4 cup), at room temperature
1 ½ cups white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ½ cups flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
for the icing:
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
6 tsp milk
4 tsp light corn syrup
1 tsp almond extract
Combine the flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl and set aside. In a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until the mixture reaches a light, fluffy consistency. Beat in the eggs one at a time and then add the vanilla extract. Once the ingredients are well mixed, incorporate the flour mixture. Lay out a piece of plastic wrap on the counter, scoop out the dough from the stand mixer and form it into a ball. Place the dough in the middle of the plastic wrap and cover completely. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Clear off a space to roll out the dough and generously flour it to prevent the dough from sticking. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and knead it a few times on the floured surface until it becomes easy to work with. Roll out the dough so it’s about ⅛ to ¼ inch thick. Use cookie cutters to create shapes with the dough, making sure the surface is well floured so the shapes are easy to pick up and transfer to the baking sheet.
Arrange the cookies 1 inch apart on the parchment lined baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the refrigerator for 10 minutes. This is so the cookies retain their shape better during baking.
Bake the cookies for 6-7 minutes, or until golden around the edges. Transfer the cookies to a cooling rack and let them reach room temperature while you make the icing.
To make the icing, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and milk until smooth in a large bowl. Whisk in the corn syrup and almond extract until the icing reaches a glossy and silk-like consistency. Almond extract can be found in the baking aisle of any grocery store. It most likely will be right next to the vanilla extract. Don’t substitute vanilla extract for almond extract…the almond extract singlehandedly makes these cookies.
I like putting the icing in a squeeze bottle to outline the cookies with first. It makes frosting them significantly easier, you just need to fill in the outlines after! If the icing is too thin, it will drip down the sides of the cookies so make sure it’s on the thicker side. If the icing is too thick, pop it in the microwave for 5 seconds and it will be easier to decorate the cookies with.
After you’ve iced the cookies, make sure you let them dry for several hours otherwise they’ll stick together if stacked. Cookies stuck together isn’t the end of the world, obviously…but boy do they look better not stuck together.