2 cups unsalted butter, (1 lb, 454 grams, 16 ounces) in cubes, softened for about 20 minutes at room temperature
2 cups (400 grams/14 ounces) sugar
2 large eggs (straight from refrigerator)
2 teaspoons (10 mL) pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon (1.25 mL) pure lemon extract
[i]Royal Icing Ingredients[/i]
6oz (3/4 c) warm water
5 T meringue power
1 tsp cream of tartar
2.25 lbs (1 kg) powdered sugar
[i]Make the sugar cookies:[/i]
In large bowl, sift together flour and salt. Set aside.
Use an electric mixer to cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in eggs.
Add flour mixture and mix on low speed until thoroughly combined. Stir in vanilla and lemon extract.
Steps to the perfect rolled dough:
Remove 1/2 of dough from bowl, make a ball, and place on a large piece of plastic wrap on counter.
Wrap the sides of wrap over the ball, then press down with the palm of your hand and make a disc about 2? thick. Finish wrapping the disc with the plastic wrap. Repeat with 2nd half of dough.
Chill both discs of dough for about 45 minutes.
Remove one disc and remove plastic wrap. Place on top of a large piece of parchment paper (I use a silicone rolling mat underneath to ensure it doesn’t slip while rolling, but you can even dampen counter so the parchment sticks a bit.), then place two 1/4? wooden dowels on either side of your dough, then another sheet of parchment paper.
Roll dough (this will require a bit of elbow grease for the first few minutes until it softens up a bit) so it’s flush with dowels–they will ensure that your dough is even thickness.
Preheat your oven to 350 F. Slide your parchment paper and dough onto a board, then place in refrigerator for about 15 minutes.
Remove from fridge, and cut your shapes using the cutters of your choice, placing them on a baker’s half sheet lined with a Silpat Mat, with 2? clearance around each one and the edge of sheet.
Place sheet with cookies into freezer for 15 minutes before baking. Then bake 10-12 minutes, or until edges are golden brown.
Cool sheets on wire racks for 10 minutes, then gently remove cookies and place on wire racks to finish cooling.
May be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. They also freeze well.
[i]Make the royal icing:[/i]
Add water + meringue power, whisk 30 sec.
Add cream of tartar, whisk 30 sec.
Add all of the icing sugar and mix with paddle attachment on low for 10min.
Add a tsp of clear vanilla if your meringue power has no vanilla
Tint with food color and use a damp towel to prevent drying.
[i]Assemble the Sugar Cookies[/i]
To make the wedding dress shape, I sketched one on a piece of paper, cut it out and used a knife to trace around the cookie dough. In order for the cookie to keep its shape, the dough should be chilled as mentioned in the directions above.
For the frosting, I made the royal icing thick with a little extra powdered sugar. I then piped a thin outline in both white and then purple in the middle for the sash.
I thinned the remaining royal icing with a few drops of water (add slowly, it doesn’t take too much!) and “flooded” the outline.
I bought little cellophane bags and tied each with a purple ribbon (my sister’s wedding color) so they looked extra fancy (and didn’t dry out overnight or stick together, which I was more concerned about)!
The cookies were a huge hit! They almost looked too pretty to eat – but were delicious. Definitely the best sugar cookies ever.
Sugar Cookies – Sweetapolita, Royal Icing – Sweetopia