Friday, August 26, 2011
Frosted Soft Sugar Cookies
I've been slacking on the blog. I made these cookies nearly 2 weeks ago but haven't gotten around to posting yet. I have grand dreams of getting up to daily posting one of these days....well at least 5 days a week. What I found is it's easy to get behind. And I could kick myself because somehow I completely blanked on the last post on 8/21 concluding the Sweet Melissa Sundays baking group. Though the last 2 weeks have been busy, I'm ready to get back in business here...Starting with these frosted soft sugar cookies.
I first saw these cookies on Tracey's Culinary Adventures. She posted them 2 days before I was leaving for my annual girls getaway to the desert. My two pals and I usually take 3 days off of work every summer and sojourn to the 110 degree heat of the desert for a little food (ok, a lot of food), a little sun (we, or me I should say, spend quite a bit of time in the shade or mostly submerged in the pool) and a little shopping. Normally this type of cookie wouldn't make it on my must make list mostly because I'm not a big fan of sugar cookies. But I was thinking of my girls knowing this is exactly the type of cookie that would put a little sparkle in their eyes. So the day before we left I got busy.
Like Tracey, I decided to only make half the recipe given I would not be partaking in the finished product. Half a recipe yielded 12 large soft, tender, cakey sugar cookies. I did take one bite out of one cookie for the sake of a photo and I thought I should at least try it, even if it's not my favorite. kind of cookie. They tasted ok to me, but I'm not really a good judge. Hubby tasted one and I thought he would like them because he's a big proponent of sugar cookies and sweet frosting, but apparently he wasn't in love either. He said he didn't care for the texture and they were too soft, sticking to the roof of his mouth. My girls seemed to enjoy them however, polishing off every last one that I brought along on the trip. I'll take that as a good sign.
These are easy and fun cookies to make. You can can get creative with your frosting by tinting it with various shades of food coloring and decorating it with festive sprinkles or candies, personalizing it for any occasion.
Soft Frosted Sugar Cookies
from Annie's Eats (adapted from Hostess with the Mostess) via Tracey's Culinary Adventures)
For the Cookies:
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
4 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
5 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Frosting:
5 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
1/3 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
7-8 tablespoons milk (or more if needed)
Food coloring and sprinkles (optional)
In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking soda and salt and set aside. Cream butter and sugar in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer about 3 minutes until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time into the butter sugar mixture. Add vanilla and mix until fully combined. Turn mixer to low and gradually add the flour until just incorporated. Cover dough with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
Once dough is chilled, preheat oven to 350 and prepare 2 baking sheets by lining with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Using a large ice cream scoop (about 1/4 cup) to scoop out dough and roll into a ball. Place the ball of dough on the parchment and press down to flatten slightly spacing at least 2 inches apart. I baked 6 per sheet. Bake for 12-13 minutes and edges are just set. Cookies will be pale in color. Cool the baking sheets on a wire rack for about 5 minutes and then transfer the cookies directly to the rack to complete cooling.
In a medium to large bowl whisk the confectioners sugar, butter, milk and vanilla together. Add more milk if necessary to achieve desired frosting consistency. You want it a little thick so it doesn't run over the sides of the cookie. You can also add additional confectioner's sugar if you want a thicker consistency. Add food coloring if you want to tint your frosting.
Once cookies have completely cooled, spread a generous amount of frosting on the top of the cookie leaving a 1/4 edge around the top. Decorate with sprinkles or candies if using. See cookies aside (or place in the refrigerator) to allow the frosting to set.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
Yields 24 large cookies