Basic Sugar Cookies
Courtesy of Zimmysnook
Rated 5.0 stars by 4 users
Elaine and I gathered around the kitchen island, turned on Christmas music and enjoyed a lovely afternoon making cookies for our Christmas Cookie Box. To keep it simple, we used our recipe for Basic Sugar Cookies to transform into a variety of three shapes and flavour combinations – from charming Christmas trees with maple vanilla icing to cozy chocolate peppermint mittens and shimmering stars.
Adding a twist of peppermint extract and cocoa to the mittens adds a festive variety to the box, ensuring every bite is a unique experience.
Decorating is where the real magic happens! The trees come alive with a maple vanilla icing and colourful M&M ornaments, while the stars shine bright with a simple sugar icing topped with golden sprinkles.
To finish out the box we made some large and small gingerbread people, chocolate chip cookies and Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies. The thumbprint cookie dough came together in seconds in the mini food processor and the filling was simply raspberry jam.
Share these homemade delights with loved ones, gift them to friends, or simply savour them with a cup of hot cocoa, Madeira Mulled Wine, or with brandy by the fireplace.
We wish everyone a happy and healthy holiday!
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into the measuring cup, then leveled
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon Peppermint extract
2 ½ teaspoons Unsweetened cocoa powder
White chocolate, melted
Crushed candy canes to decorate
1 cups icing sugar
1/2 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 tablespoon cold water
1/2 oz semi sweet chocolate, melted
48 Mini M&Ms (24 each red & green), cut in half.
OvenBond 3pc Mixing Bowl Set
OvenBond Medium Baking Sheet
For the Chocolate Peppermint (Mitten) Cookies
Maple Vanilla Icing (used on the Christmas Trees or any cookie)
Make the Basic Sugar Cookie Dough
In a bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl using a handheld mixer, (or the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment), add the butter and sugar and beat on high speed until smooth and creamy, scraping the bowl occasionally to ensure the mixture is well blended.
Next, add the egg, and vanilla, then beat on high speed until combined. Scrape the bowl and beat more as required.
Add the dry ingredients a little at a time, to the wet ingredients and mix on low until fully combined.
Roll out the Dough
Rip or cut six (6) pieces of parchment paper, approximately 9” x 13”.
Divide the dough into three (3) equal parts.
For the Chocolate Peppermint (Mittens) Cookies
Take one portion of dough, place it in a bowl, add the peppermint extract and cocoa powder and mix until well combined.
Roll out the Other Two Balls of Dough
Place each portion onto a piece of parchment paper, then cover with a second piece of parchment paper. Using a rolling pin, roll out each piece of dough to about 1/4-inch thickness (between 3/16-inch to 1/4-inch works well).
Place the rolled-out dough sheets on a sheet pan, stacking each one flat on top of the other. Cover with plastic wrap or foil, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, up to 24 hours.
Preheat the oven
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350°F.
Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Cut out Shapes
Carefully remove the top chilled dough piece from the sheet pan and place it on a flat work surface. Using the cookie cutter of your choice, cut the dough into shapes. Arrange the cut-out cookies on a baking sheet about 2 inches apart.
Re-roll the remaining dough scrapes to the same thickness and continue cutting shapes until all the dough is used. *** the number of cookies will vary based on the thickness of the dough and the size of the cookie cutter ***
Repeat with second and third pieces of dough.
Bake the Cookies
Bake for 11-14 minutes, rotating the baking sheet halfway through, until the cookies are lightly golden around the edges.
Remove from the oven and allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the Christmas Trees
Make the Maple Vanilla Icing: In a bowl, combine the icing sugar, syrup, vanilla, and water, then whisk until smooth. (If required, you can thin the icing by adding 1 tsp of cold water at a time, until it is able to drizzle nicely but is not runny).
Spoon the icing onto each Christmas tree, spreading it almost to the edges. Refrigerate until the icing is set.
Melt the chocolate, then add it to a sandwich bag. Cut a very small portion of the corner off. Then draw a winding line up a tree, to mimic the wire of a strand of lights. Press the mini M&Ms halves (cut side down) onto the chocolate strand as the lightbulbs (alternating red and green).
For the Chocolate Peppermint Mittens
Melt the white chocolate in a small ramekin. Carefully dip the cuff of the mitten into the white chocolate and place it back on the parchment lined sheet pan. Sprinkle the crushed candy canes on the white chocolate, then refrigerate until set.
For the third Dough Ball
Get creative and decorate the other cookies to your liking.
Wrap the cookie box with plastic wrap or store in a sealed container or bag at room temperature for up to 5 days. Refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 10 days.