Painted sugar cookies a perfect snack for winter outings

  • Saturday, November 28, 2009 12:01am
  • Life

Pack these cute mittens and a Thermos of hot chocolate when you head for the hills to chop down your tree.

Painted sugar cookies

For the cookies:

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1/2 cup (4 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

3 eggs

1 teaspoon almond extract

1 teaspoon orange extract

31/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

For the glaze:

1 cup powdered sugar

1 tablespoon corn syrup

2 tablespoons water

Food coloring

In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together the butter, cream cheese and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing thoroughly between each. Add the almond and orange extracts.

Mix in the flour, baking powder and salt. Divide the dough in half, wrap each piece in plastic and refrigerate for 2 hours, or overnight. When ready to bake, heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Working on a lightly floured surface, roll the dough until about 1/4 inch thick. Use cookie cutters to cut cookies from the dough. Transfer the cookies to a baking sheet, then bake for 8 to 12 minutes, or until just golden around the edges. Cool on a wire rack completely before painting.

To make the glaze, stir together the powdered sugar, corn syrup and water. Divide the mixture into several cups (depending on how many colors you want) and add food coloring as desired.

Use paintbrushes to apply the glaze. When painting, stir regularly to avoid a mottled appearance when dry. You also can sprinkle with decorating sugars while the glaze is still wet. Allow to dry thoroughly before storing in an airtight container with parchment between layers.

Makes 20 cookies (using a 4-inch cookie cutter).

Adapted from “The King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion”

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