Saturday, December 26, 2009

Traditional Sugar Cookies

It's been a busy few weeks of reusing recipes and eating leftovers as we clean out the fridge for the mass of company coming this holiday season. But one of the joys (and curses) of the season is cooking and baking those special goodies. As I've been getting older, the good traditional family recipes are being passed down to me.

My family got this recipe, I believe, from a Betty Crocker cookbook some years back. Every year, Grandma would make these cookies for Christmas, and this year I continued the tradition. It takes a lot of work, but is very good.

Traditional Sugar Cookies

3/4 cup shortening (we use margarine)
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups Flour (do not use self-rising flour)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt

Thoroughly mix shortening, sugar, eggs and flavouring.
Blend in flour, baking powder and salt.

Cover, and chill for at least 1 hour.

Heat oven to 400 degrees.
Roll dough 1/8 inch thick on a lightly floured cloth-covered board. (or, as we do, on our flour-covered counter with a floured rolling pin)
Using cookie cutters, cut into desired shapes, and then place on an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake 6 to 8 minutes, or until very light brown.

We usually ice our cookies too, using this Vanilla Buttercream Frosting recipe from Betty Crocker

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup butter or margarine
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 to 2 tbsp milk

In a medium bowl, mix the powdered sugar and butter (either with a spoon or an electric mixer on low)
Stir in vanilla and 1 tbsp of milk.

Gradually beat in remaining milk until the frosting is smooth and spreadable. If too thick, beat in more milk. If too thin, beat in more powdered sugar.


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