Eris bakes: What could be more chaotic than a teenager in the kitchen?

{February 24, 2013}   Vanilla Bean Sugar Cookies

Right after we got a bazzillion boxes of girl scout cookies, my cousin gave me the food mission of sugar cookies. And I said a week after the girl scout cookies were gone. Well….Valentine’s Day was coming up and I already had cheesy Hobbit valentines but I wanted to do something that was more “crazy me” than “random 3rd grader” so I looked on pinterest for a good recipe and found an AMAZING one.

From the Ginger Snap Girl

Vanilla Bean Sugar Cookies
adapted from Hugs & Cookies XOXO

2 1/2 sticks butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped out
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons milk
left over vanilla bean pod from the cookies plus another 1/2 vanilla bean with the seeds scraped out
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon orange extract (optional)
1 3/4 cups powdered sugar, sifted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together on medium speed until light and fluffy about 2 minutes.  Add egg and beat until combined.  Add vanilla bean seeds and vanilla extract and beat until just combined.  

In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.  

Turn mixer to low and slowly and dry ingredients into the butter sugar mixture until fully combined and a dough forms.  Turn dough out onto plastic wrap and divide in two equal pieces.  Flatten each piece into a round about 1 inch thick.  Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.  

Roll out dough between two large sheets of parchment paper to just under 1/4 inch thick.  Flour the parchment and dough well as the dough tends to be sticky.  Use your favorite shaped cookie cutter to cut out cookies.  Carefully remove each shape and place on the parchment lined baking sheet about 1/2 inch apart.  To help coax the cut out cookies off the parchment, place your hand under the bottom sheet of parchment and pull the parchment away from the dough so you can gently remove the cookie.  Place baking sheet in the refrigerator for 15-30 minutes to chill the cut out cookies.  Bake for 10 – 12 minutes or until bottom edges appear lightly golden brown.  Allow to cool on baking sheet for about 15 minutes and then transfer to cooling rack.

While cookies are baking start on the glaze.  Place the milk, vanilla bean pods and seeds in a medium bowl.  The idea is to get all the vanilla goodness infused in the milk.  Set aside.

While cookies are cooling remove vanilla bean pods from the milk and add vanilla extract and orange extract if using.  Whisk in powdered sugar.  Glaze will be loose and pourable.  Set aside until cookies are completely cooled.  

Set up a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (you can use the same sheet the cookies baked on).  Place a wire rack on top of the baking sheet.  Dip the face of each cookie so it is completely covered in glaze.  Place cookie face up on the wire rack allowing any excess glaze to drip off on to the parchment paper below.  Allow glaze to dry completely, about 90 minutes.

Makes about 4 dozen 3 inch cookies.


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