Perfect Sugar Cookies For Valentine’s Day
Our family makes cookies for almost every holiday. When Aiden was little it was something that he really enjoyed doing and the tradition stuck. Sugar cookies are the favorite option and after years of making them, I’ve found a few tricks that help me get great tasting and pretty cookies.
Tip #1: Leave out the baking soda. Almost all sugar cookie recipes I’ve seen have baking soda. The baking soda does help make the cookie a little fluffier, but with cut out cookies it’s not enough to even notice. It usually just causes the cookie to spread and then you don’t get nice shapes.
Tip #2: Roll them out thicker than you think. It makes the cookies easier to decorate and less likely to be too dry or over cook. Most people recommend 1/4 of an inch. I make mine just a little thicker than that (most of the time, sometimes I’m not the one in charge of the rolling pin).
Tip #3: Use your freezer. Roll out your cookie dough on a pastry sheet and then put it in the freezer for about 10 minutes before using your cookie cutters. Then cut out the cookies place them on your cookie sheet and put them back in the freezer for 5 minutes. Take them right from your freezer and put them in the oven. By doing this it’s easier to move the dough around, it is easier to cut them and they don’t lose their shape or spread too much.
To Make Window Sugar Cookies:
To create these “window” sugar cookies, you will need Jolly Ranchers or some other hard candy. Cut your cookie, place it on a cookie sheet then use a smaller cookie cutter to cut out the center. When I cut out the center on my pastry sheet and moved the cookie, it often broke the cookie. So doing it on the cookie sheet worked better. We used the center cut outs as mini cookies. If your center cut out is fairly large, you can just place a whole jolly rancher in the center. Ours weren’t that big, so we crushed the candies and then put about 2/3 of a candy in the center. Make sure your pan is sprayed well with cooking spray. You then bake your cookies as directed in your recipe. The candy will melt and spread and create these beautiful window cookies. Let the cookies cool completely on the pan.