We did it! Saturday afternoon my daughter and her friends rolled up their sleeves for some really hard fun. It was too sweet. You know one of them started singing songs that matched the cookie shapes and the others followed along. We had Xmas tree shapes, ginger bread men and stars and we listened to “O Xmas tree!”, “Twinkle, twinkle little star” and “Run, run as fast as you can. You can’t catch me I’m the gingerbread man!”. For the dough, I followed Vicky’s recipe. The credits for the decorations go to my daughter and her wonderful friends.
- 150 grams butter at room temperature
- 100 grams sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 cups all purpose or ‘soft’ flour
- vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
How to make: Beat the butter and the sugar in a food mixer using the whisk part. Beat well at medium to high speed gradually until it becomes nice and fluffy. Add the egg, salt and vanilla extract . Vicky most likely uses vanilla powder, which is not very common in the U.S. Beat a few more minutes. At this point I switch the whisk part with the bread part. Either one of the white parts in this photo is fine. Switch speed to `stir’, or the lowest possible, and add the flour and baking powder (already mixed). Stir until the dough is evenly moist. Divide the dough in three parts, put in plastic wrap and store in the fridge for about an hour. You can flat the wrapped dough with your hands or by using a roller pin before you store it in the fridge. When ready, take the dough out of the fridge and use a rolling pin to flatter it. It will help to sprinkle some flour on the working surface and rolling pin. If the dough is too sticky sprinkle more flour. Don’t overdo it and sprinkle gradually. It’s harder to correct the dough if it becomes too hard. Well, you know the rest. Use your favorite cookie cutters to cut the cookies. Place equally sized cookies in a baking pan, lined with parchment paper or silicone pan mats (see notes) and bake at approximately 340 F for about 10 minutes, depending on the size of the cookies. The cookies are ready just before they start having a golden color. If you do see them turn gold, take them out immediately. Vicky recommends 160 C which is 320 F but, frankly, you need to know your own oven and adjust accordingly. You want a low to medium temperature. Leave the decorations to your kids imagination. Else, I recommend some decorations tips I found here.
Notes and tips: This year I decided to be fancier with the cookies. I got a non-stick, silicone rolling mat and silicone baking pan liners . I didn’t get too excited about using the rolling mat. Well, actually, it was the girls who used it so I don’t really know but I guess it’ ll be more worthy of its money when rolling dough for pies. That’s because it shows pie sizes. I enjoyed the pan liners. The cookies did not stick at all so I didn’t need to clean the liners from one bunch to another and the pans didn’t even need washing. I also got cookie cutters with stencils to make fancier cookies with jam in the middle, etc, but didn’t use the stencils this time. And, no, that’s not all. I also got a cookie press to make tiny, fun shaped tea cookies. I tried it with different dough while the girls were working on their cookies. It was great! I’ll tell you about it in my next post. Stay tuned.