Sugar cookies are my thang. I love the creativity it ignites and the artist that comes flowing out of me when I’m making cookies. A few years ago a sweet friend shared her tips with me, and I am excited to pass them along to you!
First: PLAN ACCORDINGLY.
When making sugar cookie dough, you MUST make your dough at least four hours before you roll it out. It works even better is you let it rest overnight in the fridge. I do understand emergencies arise. You know what I’m talking about; it’s 10 at night and you remember you have to bring snacks to Little Sally’s class in the morning…sorry these cookies aren’t going to cut it sister, you must HAVE THE TIME.
Second: ROLL DAT DOUGH.
Roll your dough in between two pieces of parchment paper instead of using added flour on your work surface. Flour just makes a mess and causes your cookies to taste bland. You want your dough to be level so that the cookies bake evenly, so it is important to make sure to roll your dough between rolling guides. (If you don’t want to invest in plastic ones, you can make your own by taping two pain sticks together and using them on each side of your dough.) Once your cookies are rolled, put the cut shapes back into the fridge or freezer until they are hard (about 15-20 minutes) before you bake them. Why you ask? This helps the dough hold its shape. Yay for snowmen and Christmas trees not looking like dough blobs!
Third: DON’T OVERBAKE.
Line your baking pan with parchment paper (NOT WAX PAPER) and place your chilled cut outs on the baking sheet. The trick to my cookies is 9-10 min MAX. Take them out before they get even the tiniest bit brown and then let them sit on the parchment paper lined cookie sheet for a few minutes until moving them to your cooling rack.
Fourth: ROYAL ICING.
My favorite way to decorate cookies is with royal icing. You will need meringue powder for this recipe and you can’t find this ingredient at Kroger, so plan ahead and pick kit up in the cake decorating aisle at WalMart, JoAnn’s or Hobby Lobby. Two of my BIGGEST lessons learned are: You must use OIL FREE food colorings as well as OIL FREE flavorings. If you don’t, your icing will not set up right. NOT a good thing after you’ve already invested the effort in all those cookies!