Okay, so this year I decided I'm taking back Christmas for myself. For years, I've gotten really disillusioned with the holiday season. You know, the stores opening at 4 a.m. the day after Thanksgiving. People fighting over parking spaces and material items. Call me a Scrooge, but how is any of that in the spirit of Christmas? (Or any other holiday that holds spiritual meaning to people.) The consumerism and over-consumption is sickening to me. So, this year Sleek and I are going easy on the gifts for the kids and family. We're doing practically all of our shopping online. The thought of a department store or mall at this time of year nearly sends me into a state of panic.
So, here's the deal: I'm doing things I like this year. I'm going to be happy and make it a special time for the kids. (I've actually been listening to Christmas music with them for two weeks already. And I enjoy it!) I'm doing lots and lots of baking. I'm not getting stressed out. I decided it would be fun to blog about my holiday baking. I started last night by making my snowflake sugar-cookies. Unfortunately, my snowflake cookie-cutters didn't really make cookies that look much like snowflakes. However, they really, really taste good! I use a recipe given to me by a family friend. It makes the best sugar cookies, and the dough is very easy to work with. Here goes:
1 stick of butter
1 cup of sugar
2 cups of sifted flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 TBS Brandy
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Cream butter and sugar. Sift dry ingredients. Add to butter mixture and blend well. Add egg, brandy and vanilla. Beat until well-mixed. Shape dough into two flattened rounds, wrap and chill for at least an hour. Roll and cut into shapes. Bake at 350 degrees on parchment-lined sheets for 10 minutes. Do not allow them to brown!
I like to just use coarse sugar on them, which I put on before baking. They could be baked plain and iced when cool. I also usually double the recipe.