Christmas Sugar Cookies

Merry Christmas everyone!! I hope you’ve all had a wonderful morning, and that Santa was good to you =) My Christmas themed IMM will be up tomorrow, so I thought I would take today to tell you all about my favourite Christmas activity/tradition – baking sugar cookies!

For the last few years, I’ve baked a huge batch or two of sugar cookies and handed them out to all my friends and co-workers. Sugar cookies are pretty simple to make, and they are really fun to decorate! I make mine in the shapes of trees and gingerbread men, though next year I might just have to invest in candy-cane and star shaped cookie cutters to give some variety. The recipe I use makes an easy 36 cookies, and each batch only takes around 8-10 minutes to cook, so the actual cooking time is pretty quick and easy. It’s the hour or more long wait while the dough cools in the fridge that is time consuming!

The decorating is my favourite part! I whip up some royal icing and split it into two – green tint for the trees, red for the gingerbread men! Personally, I like my sugar cookies without a lot of icing, so I only pipe around the edges, and use mini M&M’s as buttons or ornaments. If you are one who likes more icing, it is perfectly easy to flood the inside and still use the M&M’s as decorations. Because this is the season of giving, I thought I’d share the recipe I use with you!

Sugar Cookies
from Food Network Canada.

Ingredients
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 pinch salt
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Whisk flour, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Beat in the sugar in three additions (use electric mixer).
3. Beat in the egg and vanilla (use electric mixer).
4. Using a wooden spoon, mix in the flour mixture in three additions until the dough sticks together.
5. Divide the dough in half, and flatten each slightly. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least one hour. Can be kept in the fridge up to 24 hours.
6. Preheat oven to 375°F
7. Roll out dough one piece at a time on a lightly floured surface, about a 1/4 inch thick.
8. Flour your cookie cutters before using.
9. Roll scraps together and repeat steps 7 and 8 until all your dough is used.
10. Bake each batch of cookies for approx. 8-10 minutes. Do not let them get too brown. In fact, no brown at all is great!

These sugar cookies are also a great treat to have during Christmas dinner. I hope you all enjoy them as much as I do! Merry Christmas!