When I was younger, each Christmas Eve day, my mom would keep us kids busy with a batch of sugar cookie dough. We'd roll the dough out on the kitchen table. Then we'd gather all the old cookie cutters and cut cookie sheets full of of Christmas-shaped sugar cookies. Mom would help us bake them, and while they were baking she'd make a huge batch of frosting.
Once the cookies were baked and cooled, we would pile on frosting and sprinkles to each cookie.
Mom was pretty smart, This would distract us for hours, and she was able to get her Christmas preparations done without us kids getting under foot.
Cut-Out Sugar Cookies
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1-1/4 cups sugar
1/4 cup corn syrup or regular pancake syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 cups flour (plus more for rolling out the dough)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Sprinkles, colored sugars, candies, chips, nuts
Cream together butter, shortening, and sugar until light and fluffy. Add syrup, eggs, and vanilla. Beat until well combined. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add to creamed mixture. Mix until well blended. If dough is sticky, divide in half and wrap each half with plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 1 hour. If the dough is not too sticky you can roll dough out to 1/4" thickness on a large floured surface. Cut out with cookie cutter. Transfer to lightly greased cookie sheet. Place cookies 2 inches apart. Bake at 375 degrees for 5-9 minutes. DO NOT OVERBAKE. Remove cookies to a cooling rack. Allow to cool completely before frosting and decorating with sprinkles, colored sugars, candies, chips, or nuts.
Makes 3-4 dozen cookies
NOTE: If you're short on time, you can roll dough into 1-inch balls. Place balls 2 inches apart on a lightly greased baking sheet. Use the bottom of a drinking glass dipped in sugar to flatten each ball to 1/4 inch thickness. Bake and decorate according to directions above.
In a large bowl cream together 1/2 cup shortening, and 1 stick of butter
with 1-1/4 cups sugar until light and fluffy.
Add 1/4 cup corn syrup or regular pancake syrup,
and 1 tablespoon vanilla extract. Beat until well combined.
Sift together 3 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt together.
Gradually add to the creamed mixture at low speed. Mix until well blended.
If the dough is sticky, divide it in half, wrap each half in plastic wrap
and refrigerate at least an hour.
When the dough is ready to roll out, cover a surface with flour.
Roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness.
Now it's ready for the fun part - the cookie cutters.
Transfer cookies to a lightly greased baking sheet. Place cookies 2 inches apart. Bake at 375 degrees for 5-9 minutes. Watch these closely and do not over-bake. Once the edges begin brown just a little, they're done.