Whenever I think about Christmas, I feel warm and fuzzy inside. There’s something in the air during this holiday seasons that makes me feel so ridiculously happy – maybe it’s the sense of nostalgia of it all. Back when I first started baking, the only thing I knew how to bake were cookies. Although I made them out of boxed mixes, I still felt so happy and proud whenever I gave them to someone. So this year, I thought it was only appropriate for me to relive that joy of giving through baking these obnoxiously festive-looking sugar cookies. I have to admit that neither am I a big fan of brightly colored royal icing nor am I a fan of sugar cookies. But they are so festive, I can’t help but love them! I got the recipe for the cookies from Allrecipes and the royal icing from the fabulous blog Joyofbaking.
- 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
- 2 cups white sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 5 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Sift the dry ingredients
- In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth.
- Beat in eggs and vanilla.
- Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out dough on floured surface 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any
- cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
- Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.
Joy of Baking’s Royal Icing Using Egg Whites
2 large (60 grams) egg whites
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
3 cups (330 grams) confectioners (powdered or icing) sugar, sifted
In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the egg whites with the lemon juice until combined. Add the sifted powdered sugar and beat on low speed until combined and smooth. (The right consistency to cover or “flood” sugar cookies is when you lift the beater, the ribbon of icing that falls back into the bowl remains on the surface for a few seconds before disappearing. Another test is to take a cookie and place a small amount of icing in the center of the cookie. Using a small knife, push the icing to the edge of the cookie. If the icing runs off the edge, thicken the icing by adding a little more confectioners sugar. Conversely, if the icing is too thick, add a little water.) The icing needs to be used immediately or transferred to an airtight container as royal icing hardens when exposed to air. Cover with plastic wrap when not in use.
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