Friday, September 16, 2011

Our Favorite Sugar Cookies

One of the things I love most about the fall and winter holidays are the treats the kids and I bake.  We do a lot of cupcakes and cookies, and one of our favorite goodies to bake are sugar cookies!  Personally, I love a thick, soft sugar cookie with a lightly sweet icing.

The kiddos' tasty handiwork from the other night

Here is my go-to recipe, which I adapted with just a few very slight tweaks from this one here a few years back.  I love it so much, I've never used another since!

Stuff you need:

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter or vegan butter substitute (Earth Balance is my fave!)
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla  
  • 2 1/2 cups flour, plus a little more for dusting your roller, countertop, and cookie cutters
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (fine crystals, not coarse!)

How to make 'em:

1.  Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  Cream together butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl.
2.  Add eggs and vanilla and mix on low speed until combined.
3.  In a separate mixing bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and sea salt.
4.  Slowly add dry ingredient mixture to butter-sugar mixture and mix at medium speed until thoroughly combined.
5.  Add eggs and vanilla, and mix for another 30 seconds or until all ingredients are well combined.
6.  On a thoroughly sanitized counter top (this is important- food-borne illness causes many, many deaths each year.  Don't let yourself or someone you love become a statistic!) dusted with flour, roll out your cookie dough using a lightly floured rolling pin, to about 1/2 inch thick.  Cut out with your favorite cookie cutters (you can dip them in flour if your cookies are sticking.)
7.  Place cookies on a lightly greased cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes (depending on your oven.)
8.  Decorate with your favorite frosting (this one is my favorite- I swap the corn syrup for additional water; it makes a great icing that dries nicely so that you can stack and store your cookies) and sprinkles!  (If you want to use sprinkles without frosting the cookies you will need to put the sprinkles on before you bake them.)


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Falling for Fall

Fall is more or less my favorite season.  The scents, the weather, the food, the fun little events... I love it!  It always seems to put me in a crafty mood, so yesterday the girls and I headed to the local fabric and craft store to pick out some projects.

First up, a DIY autumn wreath!  Inspired by this post I found via Google, we picked up some leaf garland and a twig wreath.  For these two things we spent about $13 with a coupon... score!  Way cheaper than the ready-made versions sold in stores.


Hot glue gun and glue sticks
Leaf garland
Twig wreath

I snipped all of the leaves and berries off of the garland, then with the assistance of my little helpers glued them all over the wreath, sticking the stems of the leaves in between the twigs with glue dabbed on the ends.

Here is the finished product!  In this photo there's a bare spot(upper right), which I filled in afterward, but you get the idea!

I'm so happy with our handiwork, and best of all we really enjoyed making it.  Today we'll be baking some autumn sugar cookies... I'll post about those soon.  Happy crafting!