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Sharp Edged Sugar Cookies


Kim Shook
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I'm trying to get a jump on holiday baking this year and one of the annual frustrations is making cut out sugar cookies that blob out of shape when they cook. I have a nice collection of cooky cutters, including some fairly intricate snowflakes that I'd love to use. But no matter how thin I manage to roll the dough, they go in the oven and start 'growing'. I end up with generally star or snowman-shaped puffies, but not those beautiful sharp edged cookies that I see in the magazines. Does someone have a tried and true recipe they would care to share with me? Thanks!

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I don't do decorated cookies on a regular basis, but some colleagues of mine have a great deal of success with the No-Fail Sugar Cookie recipe. That recipe can be found in several websites on the Internet.

When I do make cut-out cookies, I use Toba Garrett's cookie recipe from her book Creative Cookies.

Here's a link to a blog that has the recipe on it.

http://blog.razzledazzlecookies.com/category/recipes

Theresa :biggrin:

"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."

- Abraham Lincoln

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the recipe I use calls for equal amounts of sugar and butter (mixed together but not creamed - no adding air); then eggs, vanilla, flour and some milk. The original recipe called for baking powder, but I didn't like the puff it gave so I leave it out. If I were making just round, crackly type of sugar cookies, I would add it but for my cookie cut outs, I leave it out.

The recipe is at work and I am at home, so I am trying to remember the quantities for the small batch size, it would be 18 oz of butter, 18 oz sugar, 3 eggs, vanilla; and I can't remember the flour but it is probably 2 pounds perhaps? And 3 tbl milk. I am just guessing on the flour, I will check in the morning.

But something else that helps is rolling the dough between sheets of parchment and letting the dough rest overnight.

I also notice that I get a smoother cookie (more shortbread like) when I roll the scraps together - it's almost as if I could use more flour or leave it in a disk and then roll it out the next day.

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If you're otherwise happy with your recipe, you could cheat: make the cookies in amorphous blobs, then hit them with the cutter as soon as they come out of the oven and while they're still soft.

Disclaimer: I have never tried this myself!

Leslie Craven, aka "lesliec"
Host, eG Forumslcraven@egstaff.org

After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relatives ~ Oscar Wilde

My eG Foodblog

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As part of the Daring Bakers we used a good sugar cookie recipe for the September challenge. It doesn't have any leavening, so the edges stay sharp. Here is the recipe:

Basic Sugar Cookies

Makes Approximately 36x 10cm / 4" Cookies

200g / 7oz / ½ cup + 6 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, at room temperature

400g / 14oz / 3 cups + 3 Tbsp All Purpose / Plain Flour

200g / 7oz / 1 cup Caster Sugar / Superfine Sugar

1 large Egg, lightly beaten

1 vanilla bean or 1 tsp. vanilla extract

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My go-to recipe for cut-out, decorated cookies is King Arthur Flour's holiday butter cookie. The posted recipe shows a nice, clear photo of sharp-edged, fairly intricate cookies. One baking tip: if your cookie sheets are warm (like for the second & subsequent batches), cookies will spread excessively. A few minutes in the freezer or a quick run under cold tap water to cool the sheets before you bake additional batches will help to retain shapes. Or get a whole bunch of baking sheets so you don't have to reuse.

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One baking tip: if your cookie sheets are warm (like for the second & subsequent batches), cookies will spread excessively. A few minutes in the freezer or a quick run under cold tap water to cool the sheets before you bake additional batches will help to retain shapes. Or get a whole bunch of baking sheets so you don't have to reuse.

Or, if it's chilly outside - just wave them a few times!

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Just to add one more to the mix, I've always used the recipe from Canadian Living: http://www.canadianliving.com/food/sugar_cookies.php It's very forgiving and holds the edge.

They seem to reprint it just about every year in their Christmas magazine.

Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Orison Swett Marden

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I have had a lot of luck with the cookie recipes in Valerie Peterson and Janice Fryer’s "Cookie Craft: From Baking to Luster Dust, Designs and Techniques for Creative Cookie Occasions." I've baked and decorated some pretty intricate cookies from the recipes in this book, and I've found it excellent for making the thicker cut cookies that do not spread that are ideal for decorating without crumbling. Here are pictures of some ghost cookies I made from the recipe in this book:

img00302-20091028-2336.jpg

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