A recipe for sugar cookies is one that every mom should have in her repertoire; they are quick and easy to make and the best part is that children LOVE them. I don’t think that I have ever hosted a children’s birthday party without making a batch of these and they are usually the first thing that is finished. That is why when my children requested that we bake cookies this weekend I didn’t hesitate to select this recipe.
The recipe that I use comes from Bakerella and has never let me down. Once I had the basic recipe mixed up I decided to divide the dough in half and colour one half pink. That way the children could play around with mixing the colours as well as making different shapes with their cookie cutters.
After the dough was made it was time to roll out the cookies.
Rolling out cookies with your children is great fun and only a bit messy (ha ha). The rolling action is great for building strength in their arms and fingers and cutting out the cookie shapes helps to build on their fine motor skills and hand-eye co-ordination. Along with this, cutting out cookie shapes of different sizes and then arranging them on the baking sheet builds on their spatial awareness. Fun and educational.
Different size cutters help with spatial awareness.
Whew, all done!
I was also instructed to make some cookies by my little ones so I decided to roll out each colour of my dough and then lay one colour on top of the other. A little more rolling to make sure that they were joined and then I rolled the whole thing up like a swiss roll. When I sliced the cookies they made pink and white spiral cookies. My children were delighted by this and requested the left over dough which they rolled out some more to create some more interesting colour patterns on their cookies.
What better way to enjoy a fresh batch of cookies than with a tea party (pink milk included), yum!
• 3 cups all-purpose (cake) flour
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
• 1 cup salted butter, cold and cut into cubes
• 1 cup sugar (I use castor sugar)
• 1 egg
• ¾ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
• ½ teaspoon almond extract
• Food colouring (optional)
• Cookie cutters of your choice
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees and line baking sheets with baking paper.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour and baking powder and set aside.
3. Cream butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and extracts mixing until combined.
4. Add the flour mixture one cup at a time, mixing on low until just combined. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. After the last addition, the mixture will look thick and crumbly.
5. Now you’re ready to roll. Line rolling surface with baking paper. Dust surface and coat your rolling pin with flour. Roll a portion of the dough on the flour-coated surface and knead it together until smooth. Roll dough about 2cm thick.
6. Remove scraps, re-knead and repeat. Make sure to reflour the work surface too.
7. Arrange cookies on prepared baking sheet. (You can easily lift them as the dough is sturdy.) You can also roll directly on to baking paper, remove scraps and transfer the baking paper to the cookie sheet.
8. Place cookies in freezer for about 10 minutes (my children are impatient so I often skip this step although it does prevent the cookies from spreading too much).
9. Bake for 9-12 minutes. Remove from oven when done and let cool for a couple of minutes on the baking tray. Use the cookie cutter again to trim cookies to size if desired. Then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Recipe courtesy Bakerella