2/3 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 recipe Royal Icing (optional)
Small decorative candies (optional)
4 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons meringue powder
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 – 4 tablespoons water
Assorted colors paste food coloring (optional)
In a large bowl, beat butter on medium to high speed for 30 seconds.
Add sugar, baking powder, and salt.
Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally.
Beat in egg, milk, and vanilla until combined.
Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer.
Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour.
Divide dough in half. Cover; chill about 30 minutes or until dough is easy to handle.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit.
On a lightly floured surface, roll dough, half at a time, until 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick.
Using 2-1/2-inch cookie cutters, cut dough into desired shapes.
Place cutouts 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake for 7 to 10 minutes or until edges are very light brown.
Transfer to wire racks and let it cool.
If desired, frost with Royal icing and/or decorate with decorative candies.
Line cookie sheet with a layer of parchment paper to prevent sticking and for easier cleanup.
In a large bowl, combine powdered sugar, meringue powder, and cream of tartar.
Add 1/2 cup of water and vanilla.
Beat with an electric mixer on low speed until combined, then on high speed for 7 to 10 minutes or until very stiff.
Add 2 to 4 tablespoons of water, 1 teaspoon at a time, to make an icing of spreading consistency.
If desired, divide icing into individual bowls and tint with paste food coloring.
Meringue powder is a mixture of pasteurized dried egg whites, sugar, and edible gums. Look for it in the baking aisle of your supermarket or at a specialty food store.
Layer uniced cookies between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container and cover. Store at room temperature for up to 2 days. If desired, ice and decorate before serving.
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