Linda Brooks's Best-Tasting Sugar Cookies 40.000
Dec 15, 2004

This recipe is about one-sixth the size of the batch that Linda Brooks makes each year. It can easily be multiplied.


Servings: 40 cookies
Ingredients
  • For the cookies
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus additional for baking sheets
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups flour, plus extra for dusting
  • For the glaze/icing
  • 4 egg whites
  • 8 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 6 drops glycerin (optional, for glossy icing)

Related Recipes

Directions

For the cookies: In the large bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and almond extracts and beat until combined.

Meanwhile, in a separate bowl or on a sheet of wax paper, combine the baking soda, cream of tartar, salt and flour. Reduce the speed to low and slowly incorporate the dry ingredients into the butter-sugar-egg mixture until well blended. Halve the dough and wrap each portion in wax paper, flattening it out to about a half-inch thick. Chill the dough sections for at least 1 hour. (If the dough is to be refrigerated longer, wrap it in plastic wrap in addition to the wax paper.)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Using 1 portion of the dough at a time, roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of no more than 1/4 inch. Cut out cookie shapes and place on a lightly buttered baking sheet. Two sheets can be baked at a time. The cookies will puff slightly but will relax just before they are done. Bake for a total of 7 to 10 minutes; about halfway through the baking time, you may need to switch positions of baking sheets or turn them back to front to allow for even baking. Cool cookies on a wire rack.

For the glaze/icing: In the large bowl of an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the egg whites or egg white mixture until stiff but not dry. Reduce speed to low to add confectioners' sugar, 1 cup at a time, alternating with the glycerin, if desired. Beat for 2 to 3 minutes more. If icing is too thick, add 1 teaspoon of water at a time; if it's too thin, add more sugar.

In a small separate bowl, place about 1/2 cup of the icing mixture and make it thin enough so that the glaze is translucent when spread with a pastry brush on a cooled cookie, about the consistency of cream. This bit is a little tricky. If the mixture is too wet or applied too thickly, it won't dry properly on the cookies. Let dry for 10 to 15 minutes. Using food-coloring gels, mix desired colors with the remaining icing mixture. Fill pastry bags fitted with decorating tips and decorate cookies.

Rate it

Recipe Source

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

Email questions to the Food Section.

Email questions to the Food Section at food@washpost.com.