December 13, 2007

Christmas Cookies

Christmas Cookies
These butter cookies had a lovely dense and tender crumb. They were not too sweet and the cream cheese glaze kept the cookies moist and delicious. I have never had much success with sugar cookies after many recipes. They always turned out dry and dull. This butter cookie will become a holiday staple.
Glazed Butter Cookies
(Makes 36 2.5 inch cookies)
Butter Cookie Dough 2 ½ cups (12.5 ounces) unbleached all purpose flour ¾ cup (5.5 ounces) of superfine sugar – process regular sugar for 20 seconds in Cuisinart ¼ tsp table salt 16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces, cool room temperature (about 65 F) 2 tsp vanilla extract 2 Tbs cream cheese (cool room temperature) Glaze 1 Tbs cream cheese room temperature 3 Tbs milk 1 ½ cups (6 ounces) confectioners’ sugar 1. In bowl of standing mixer fitted with flat beater, mix flour, sugar and salt on low speed until combined. With mixer running on low, add butter 1 piece at a time; continue to mix until mixture looks crumbly and slightly wet, about 1 minute longer. Add vanilla and cream cheese and mix on low until dough just begins to form large clumps, about 30 seconds.
2. Remove bowl from mixer and knead dough by hand in bowl for 2 to 3 turns to form large cohesive mass. Divide dough in half, pat into two disks, wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate until they begin to firm up, 20-30 minutes. Dough can be refrigerated up to 3 days or frozen up to 2 weeks).
3. Adjust oven rack to middle position; heat oven to 375 F. Roll out 1 dough disk to even 1/8 inch thickness between 2 sheets of parchment paper. Slide rolled dough onto baking sheet and freeze for 10 minutes. Work on second dough disk.
4. Working with first dough portion. Cut into desired shapes on the parchment. {I find that it is easier to very lightly flour the dough then flip over and cut on the other side. It makes the dough between the cookies come out easier without drying out the cookies by adding too much flour}. Cut into desired shapes. Space 1 ½ inches apart. Bake until light golden brown {I wait until the edges brown slightly}. Bake about 10 minutes. Dough scraps can be re-rolled once {I push for 2}. Cool on wire racks.
Glaze- Whisk cream cheese and 3 Tbs milk in medium bowl until combined and no lumps remain. Whisk in confectioners’ sugar until smooth, adding milk until glaze is thin enough to spread easily. {I add almond extract} Spread glaze by scant teaspoon or drizzle over cookie as desired.


slush said...

My son is off from kindy tomorrow, and we had decided to make cookies. These look/sound fantastic! Ill let ya know how they turn out. xo

Deborah said...

I love the idea of the cream cheese glaze!!