Old-Fashioned Sugar Cookies

old fashioned sugar cookie dough

When looking for rainy day activities baking and decorating sugar cookies is definitely a no brainer. This classic dough from The Complete Cookie looked fun to try, simple and sweet.

Ingredients: flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, butter, eggs, lemon zest and vanilla

Substitutions: I didn’t have cookie cutters so we used my daughters shape sorters to cut different shapes. This was great as she had to properly name the shape in order to get a cookie!

old fashoined sugar cookie miing

The Process: First I combined all the dry ingredients. I then pulsed the butter into the sugar using a food processor. Slowly I added the eggs, lemon zest and vanilla. I then added the flour (I mixed it in by hand instead of pulsing in the food processor). I felt I needed  few extra tablespoons of flour as the dough was way too sticky to be formed into a ball. Then I placed it in the fridge to cool. My children were very impatient to continue so I took a portion of dough out after 1 hour. This definitely was not a good move as the dough was difficult to roll. The dough that sat and chilled for the entire 3 hours, as advised, was much easier to manipulate.

I used my french style rolling pin to roll neat sheets of dough while the kids used mini 

old fashoined sugar cookie

rolling pins to roll out small patches of dough. We cut the cookies easily  and the refrigerated dough did not stick to the cutters. I placed them on silicone baking mats and used a variety of colored sugars to decorate. Everything was placed in a preheated oven at 350 degrees and baked them for 10 minutes. Do not over bake!

 

The Results: I definitely felt the recipe needed 1/3 c to 1/4 c more flour. The rolling process on the chilled dough was excellent. It did not stick to the rolling pin or the cookie cutters. There is no picture to compare to but these did retain their shape beautifully and did not spread on the sheet.old fashoined sugar cookie on tray

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Egg-Free Sprinkle Cookie

While eggs are not an allergen we worry about in my house I was still excited to try this Egg-Free Sprinkle Cookie recipe from Kids Cooking Made Easy. I run out of eggs all the time and this seemed like a quick and easy recipe I could make with my kids. It also looked quick which is exactly what I need for shabbat prep in the winter!

Ingredients:

butter or margarine (I use Earth Balance), sugar, confectioners sugar, vanilla extract, flour, rainbow sprinkles

The Process:

First you preheat the oven and line baking sheets. The recipe calls for parchment paper but I always use silicone baking mats as they never smoke (parchment paper tends to set off my smoke alarm) and cookies bake more evenly with the mats without sticking. I then creamed the margarine and sugar adding in the vanilla and flour until it formed a nice ball of dough. The kids felt it “looked like play dough”.

We then rolled the balls into circles, dipped them into rainbow sprinkles while flattening them a little bit. Then they were placed on the pre-lined baking sheet and bake.

The Results:

The recipe was easy to follow and the instructions were correct. The cookies did not spread further than the recipe said they would. However I would say the baking time of 15 minutes is more of a max time. If you have an oven that runs hot you will want to them out a bit earlier to keep a moist soft cookie. They disappeared pretty quickly from the kitchen and my company even asked to take some home!

          Egg Free Sprinkle Cookie

White Chocolate Chip and Macadamia Nut Cookies

Bais Yaakov Cookbook

White Chocolate macadamia nut cookie

From the moment I opened the Bais Yaakov Cookbook I was itching to make these cookies. The photo jumped off the page and made my mouth water. I also love white chocolate chips way more than standard run of the mill chips. I was simply waiting for the ideal moment.

The ideal moment never came. Working long nights and waking up extremely early doesn’t leave much time for anything else. What time I do have gets spent with family or studying. So instead of the perfect time, I stayed up late one night to bake. I decided to stop studying, give up a little sleep and make cookies so that hte next day, while running around the emergency department seeing consultant patients, I would at least have snacks. In a hospital with limited Kosher food, that made all the difference. The residents didn’t mind the extra snacks either.

Ingredients: 

margarine, sugar, brown sugar, eggs, vanilla, all purpose flour, baking soda, salt, old fashioned oats, white chocolate chips, chocolate bar, macadamia nuts, dried cranberries (optional)

substitutions: Earth Balance baking stick instead of margarine

The Process:

This is a one bowl cookie recipe. I threw everything but the delicate ingredients into a large bowl and mixed. I used my hand mixer because the recipe calls for “creaming” the sugar and margarine, but honestly you could probably get away without it. Then I folded in the chips, nuts and cranberries. I dropped spoonfuls onto my silicone mat lined cookie sheets and popped them into the preheated oven for 10 minutes.

The Results:

The cookies looked like the ones in the cookbook photo, except more rounded. If you like a flat cookie I suggest pressing down on the dough ball to flatten it as the dough seems to retain its shape when baking. The photo shows a crunchy cookie, and they were. If you are like me and prefer a chewier cookie then shave off some time from the baking time.

While the recipe says the cranberries are optional, I feel they are not. They added a lot to the taste of the cookie. Instead, the macadamia nut should be optional. I personally did not enjoy the flavor and crunch they added. Plus they meant the cookies were off limits to all people with nut allergies. It’s a great cookie without the (overpriced) nuts! white choc macadamia cookie 2