Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve Sugar Cookies

Its Christmas Eve and I have been intending on writing a post for three days now. We are hand making all of our Christmas presents so there have been many late nights and early mornings trying to get sewing done while the baby is asleep. We are almost done, just in the nick of time.

Even with all the hand crafting we have been doing we did find time to make sugar cookies with our 20 month old son. It was pretty successful seeing as he is in a stage that he wants to help with everything. He helped me make the dough, with a guiding hand he poured in all the ingredients, he helped me roll out the dough, he kept his hand on the rolling pin as I rolled, and he helped to cut out the cookies, he only tore off one reindeer leg. We have a nice little collection of holiday cookie cutters, some traditional: reindeer, sleigh, tree, and some non-traditional: sweater, hat, mitten, ice skate. Even with all those fun shapes my favorite way to cut out cookies is the what my dad used to do when we were kids, customized letters with a knife. Our son did not like this method as he could not help so I only did a few, but we always made sure to cut an S for Santa so he would have a cookie waiting for him on Christmas Eve.

Even with all his help I don’t plan on letting my son have more than a bite of the cookies. In an effort to stave off the inevitable sugar addiction I try to limit his sugar intake and I have found over the last few weeks, as there have been more holiday treats entering the house and I have been letting him have bites here and there, he has been rather moody. I don’t know if its just a new phase or if it has something to do with the sugar, so to be on the safe side we are going to try to limit the sugar; if he doesn’t see it he won’t want it so of course that means limiting my sugar too, and that’s not all bad. Maybe Dr. Crystal has some better information about sugar and moodiness.

So for the recipe this week… Sugar Cookies.
I adapted the recipe from an Alton Brown recipe I found on

3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
½ tsp nutmeg, freshly grated if you can
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 Tbl milk
Powdered sugar, for rolling out dough

Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Mix the first four ingredients together.
Cream the butter and the sugar till light and fluffy.
Add the egg and the milk.
Slowly mix in the dry ingredients.
Chill for two hours.
Roll out and cut into desired shapes.
Place on a cookie sheet either greased or line with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Bake for 7-9 minutes, till just barely browned at the edges.

A note about spices: I wanted to make something different so since I have recently discovered the wonderful taste of freshly ground nutmeg I decided to add it to this recipe. That being said there are many different spices you could try in this recipe, ground ginger, cloves (maybe just a dash), or cinnamon. Just add the new spice in moderation so you don’t get over powered, half a tsp in this recipe was just right, it gave it a subtle flavor.

Happy Holidays to you and all your family and friends!

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