Friday, June 3, 2011

Strawberry Sugar Cookies {Recipe}

It's been a crazy couple of weeks here in the South!  So many people's lives have been turned upside down that my problems seem practically insignificant.  Blogging about dessert seems silly when they're are so many suffering.  But then I remembered that dessert can be a release for so many of us.  Trying out new recipes can be a sweet release for many. 

Not only that, but I promised to share my strawberry sugar cookie recipe with everyone.  Plus, I've been baking up a storm lately and I love sharing the pictures!  Last week I did a full dessert table for 80 people in 3 days!  (No, I did not sleep.)  This week, I'm gearing up for moving (it was postponed) and getting things in order for a wedding cake tasting and another dessert table on the 11th. 

So without further ado, I wanted to try making strawberry sugar cookies after the success of the lemon ones.  And in case you couldn't tell, that recipe is so easy to cater to a variety of flavors.  I'm thinking next time I'm going to try cherry.

Ingredients:4 cups of unbleached flour (remember you can trade this out if needed)
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1 cup of butter, softened
1 cup of sugar
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 box of strawberry cream pudding mix.
1 teaspoon of strawberry extract
*(optional) a dab of pink gel food coloring to make them  a bit pinker
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and strawberry extract, one at a time. Mix well after each addition. Add a dab of food gel color if desired.  See the before and after food color below.
Mix dry ingredients a little at a time to butter mixture. Mix until flour is completely incorporated and the dough comes together.  You can use your clean hand to help incorporate if needed. 

Then roll it out between wax paper as previously mentioned here.  Refrigerate until firm.  I left mine overnight. (This does make the dough edges more crumbly, but I just don't cut my cookies right at the edge until I've remixed and re-rolled it.)   Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 8-10 minutes for soft cookies and 11-13 minutes for crisper cookies.*  This makes 2 dozen or so cookies, depending on size.  Keep them chilled, just like I've said before, to keep them from spreading or losing shape.  Your cookies come out PERFECT if you do this.  You may have to pop them in the freezer for 5 minutes after cutting them out if your kitchen is hot; with weather like this lately, almost everyone's is.

*If you are serving your cookies soon, then I recommend closer to the 8 min. mark.  If you are doing them in advance, like a week or two, then make them crisper and they will soften over the week or two in a sealed container on the counter.  If they are too soft they can be more difficult to decorate due to their delicateness. 

I cut some out for a baby girl theme and put those in the freezer to decorate later. 
The others I decorated with a blue and orange theme I was doing for the dessert table along with some vanilla and chocolate ones.  I had a friend of my husbands come and take professional pictures of the table, but I don't have them back yet.  (insert tear drops here)
Plain Jane, simple camera at home about 2am the day of the dessert table.
Fancy Cannon camera (borrowed from my mom) on site at the dessert table.

I really hope you give these cookies a shot.  Make a batch and give them to someone who could use a smile.  You never know how much a delicious gesture can brighten someone else's day.

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