Wednesday, February 16, 2011

My Favorite Sugar Cookies

Cookies are one of my weaknesses, especially delicious sugar cookies.  Well, after several years of trying different recipes, I think I have a favorite and I want to share it.  I found it last summer on a recipe forum website from a fellow "Yinzer".  It didn't call for vanilla though, so I changed it, because other recipes that I have tried have vanilla in it.  They actually remind me of Eat 'n Park Smiley Face Cookies.  Some of you may not know what those are, but they are some of the best sugar cookies in the world from a restaurant chain in Western PA.  I had so much fun making Valentine's Day cookies with my boys on Monday and then giving them away to a bunch of people at our local YMCA.  Sugar cookies are great year-round, not just for Christmas.  I prefer them with icing too, but you can leave that off and just decorate them before you bake them. And do you know the secret to shiny icing?  Corn syrup!  Enjoy!  Save yourself some money and make cookies and give them away as gifts (or to cheer someone up) instead of buying something.  Your kids will love having some special treats around too!

Yummy Sugar Cookies

1 cup sugar
1 cup shortening (I used butter flavored Crisco)
1 cup milk (I used whole this time, but any is fine)
2 eggs, beaten
4-5 cups of flour (I started with 4 and then added more since the dough was still sticky)
6 teaspoons baking powder
3 teaspoons vanilla

Cream sugar, shortening, milk, vanilla, and eggs.  Add flour and baking powder.  Chill dough for 30-60 minutes to make it easier to work with.  Roll out the dough onto a floured surface and use cookie cutters for desired shapes.  Place on un-greased (they work with greased too) cookie sheet and bake at 400 for 13-15 minutes, don't over-bake.  Let cool completely on wire rack before icing and decorating.

1 cup powdered sugar
2 tsp. milk (I tend to use a little extra, if it seems to thick)
2 tsp. light corn syrup
1/4 tsp.vanilla

Stir powdered sugar and milk until smooth.  Beat in corn syrup and vanilla until smooth and glossy.  (I usually double it).

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