Friday, December 19, 2008

Sweets for the Sweet

These are some of the most delicious sugar cookies - and the recipe is so simple. It was in this month's Gourmet, and Orangette posted it on her blog. I baked them last Friday to bring to a party, and the few that I kept here are still delicious, a week later in a ziploc. Plus, they are easy to make!

Danish Butter Cookies (Gourmet and Orangette)

4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 pound (four sticks!!!!) unsalted butter (best quality you can find) left at room temperature for an hour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg (beaten for egg wash)
colored sugar for decoration

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees with racks in upper and lower thirds. Line baking sheets with parchment.

2. Whisk flour and baking soda together and set aside. (I would be inclined to add a little bit of salt next time, but they were pretty darn good without's your preference).

3. Beat butter (this would be really hard without a machine - the Kitchenaide is much stronger than I am!) until fluffy (use paddle attachment). Then, add sugar and flour mixture, beating until just combined.
4. Divide dough in half and shape each half by rolling between two pieces of plastic wrap until 15"x10" rectangle. Chill on tray until firm - about 30 minutes. I didn't roll out first before chilling, and I DEFINITELY recommend doing that next time, as I had to let the dough soften after resting in the fridge. Cut out into whatever shapes you like (I love stars) and place on baking sheets. If you like, brush with beaten egg and sprinkle with sugar.

5. Bake cookies for about 15 minutes, until golden brown. Then, may I suggest whipping up a cup of very bittersweet hot chocolate and enjoying a few of these by the fire? They smell delicious, and are really pretty. They are a little delicate, so I'm not sure that I would ship them, but even the broken ones are good eats.

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