Happy (early) Valentine’s Day! Even though I’ve been single for my entire life (no I’m not kidding) and never had a Valentine on Valentine’s Day, I’ve always loved this holiday. After all, pink is my favourite colour and I adore chocolate, so what’s not to love? I know it’s a contrived holiday just designed to make money…blah, blah, blah. I’m not going to let that get in my way.
Last weekend, I went to see my cousin play in a hockey tournament. Given that her and her sister both love sugar cookies (we have made them together many times over the years), I decided to make them a pre-Valentine’s Day treat (any excuse to bake, right?). I made my classic go-to sugar cookie dough, cut it in heart shapes, topped most of the cookies with sprinkles and filled some with jam. For the jam-filled hearts, I cut out two large hearts for each sandwich, then cut a smaller heart out of one of the hearts. After baking, I spread the whole heart with strawberry jam, then topped with the cut-out one. For the sprinkled cookies, I topped them with sprinkles before baking and patted them down a bit to make sure they’d stick.
This recipe comes from my Company’s Coming for Kids Cookbook….we have written in the book that I first made these cookies for Halloween 1998. They are a stand-by in my kitchen. The batch is fairly small, but doubles (or triples) easily. They are great for decorating for any occasion. I thought I’d share the recipe now in case you want to whip up some hearts for someone special this weekend…nothing spreads the love like cookies! An added bonus to this recipe? It’s extra-easy since it’s from a kids’ cookbook – and it only uses one bowl! And now my aunt (who is an avid reader of my blog :P) has the recipe!
Sugar Cookies – from Company’s Coming – Kids’ Cooking
6 tbsp softened butter or margarine (I always use butter)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
Put the first four ingredients into a bowl. Beat on medium speed (or with a spoon) until smooth.
Add remaining ingredients, beat on low until just moistened. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours or overnight. *Note – this dough freezes really well. I often make it ahead, wrap it, and freeze until I need it. If you are in a rush, you can freeze it for about half an hour before using.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease cookie sheets with nonstick spray. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface (using a floured rolling pin) to about 1/8 inch thick. Use desired cookie cutters to cut into shapes. Arrange the cookies on the greased sheets.
If you want to decorate with coloured sugar, sprinkle before baking. Bake for about 10 minutes (depending on size). Cool on sheets about 2 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely. If you like, you can decorate with your favourite icing.