Tuesday, December 22, 2009

my faves

Just in case you haven't baked cut-out sugar cookies yet, these are
my favorite tradition at the manor. They're rustic and chunky and
have the most velvety texture. They absolutely melt in your mouth.
They take me back in time to the wonderful sugar cookies I ate as a
little girl. And speaking of little ones, I didn't bother with the
sprinkles or colored sugar, since I didn't have any helping me this
year in the big ol' empty nest.

Willow's Sugar Cookies

1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
4 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt

Combine flour and salt in a bowl and set aside. In electric mixing
bowl, mix butter, 1 cup sugar and vanilla. Add remaining sugar
and eggs and beat until fluffy. Slowly add flour mixture while
continuing to mix on low.

Roll dough 1/4 inch thick and cut out shapes. Don't add any extra
flour. The dough rolls easily without it.

Bake 350 degrees for 10 - 12 minutes. Be careful not to over bake!

Buttery Cookie Icing

3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup butter softened
1 Tbsp milk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Blend butter and powdered sugar, add milk and vanilla, mix until
smooth. Add an additional pinch of milk if needed.

Ice cooled cookies. Allow icing to set before stacking cookies.


  1. yum...sugar cookies are my fav...

    iced sugar cookies...even better!

    merry christmas to the manor!

  2. iced sugar cookies?! no way!!!! there's my wednesday bakefest with my lexie girl right there!!! i love it. have a sweet evening at the manor. steven

  3. Thank you for your time and effort in sharing with all of us your nice ideas! Your blog sets the standard! Merry Christmas!

  4. I can't guarantee to bake the cookies but I will raise a glass to all at Willow Manor over the Christmas holiday. It has been a pleasure to read your blog for the last six months and I look forward to more throughout 2010. A very Happy Christmas to you and your family Willow from us all here in Huddersfield

  5. Your sugar cookies look YUMMY!I like the description as rustic and chunky : ) That is much better than the thin, precisely cut cookies that come in a box. Yours are each one of a kind...like snowflakes!

  6. LadyCat, yup, mine are rustic, not the picture perfect kind. :^)

  7. Melt in your mouth sugar cookies...yumo! Who has time for sprinkles...icing is enough!Thanks for the recipe!

  8. As of Dec 26 I start a diet,I
    Have to. Quit smoking and gained 30 lbs.
    I will have those cookies.
    They sound Great. Cheers to you Willow
    Life shouldn't be a journey to arrive at the grave perfect,
    Rather just skid in with chocolate in one hand and wine in the other. Screaming Yaaa hoo!!
    what a ride!!
    Merry Christmas and thank you for all the devine poems and posts.
    You are so special.

  9. Argh! Warn me when you post food!

    I gain weight just coming here!

  10. Yum! I love how fat they are! :)

  11. Ah! Exactly the recipe I was looking for. Fantastic.

    The neighbors just dropped off several bags of these cookies. Damn they are so good!!

  12. aaaaahhhhh, ok... I've had these before and boy are they really really good, I'm a tellin'!!
    How are you keeping at least some from WT?.. hee hee.
    The Bach

  13. I was never very good with making cookies that you had to roll out. I am more of a drop dough type of baker when it comes to cookies.

  14. Oooh, these look so good. Simple cookies in simple shapes are the best!

    Your new header photo is so lovely, I was inspired to make one of my own for the Cafe. (Hope you are flattered, not miffed.)

  15. Oh, we made heath bars and gingersnaps and biscotti, but these sound scrumptious, and classic, Willow. I'll have to make these next week when work is done and all the hoopla's over! Thanks for another good recipe! Happy Holidays!

  16. I do believe ms t and I will be baking cookies tomorrow as our tuesday activity! sugar cookies with frosting - the BEST!!

  17. Greetings & salutations, I discovered your blog and just wanted to say hello and with your kind permission I shall return to explore another time.

  18. Welcome, Purple. Yes, please do come back and visit again!

  19. My hubby has the tradition of calling his mom every year to "ask" for the sugar cookie recipe very similar to this. The first few years, she scolded him for losing it, not realizing it was a joke. Now, 21 years later, she expects the call. Her recipe is challenging to roll, however. I wonder if we should call her but make this recipe? hmmmmm

  20. Chris, give this one a whirl. It rolls like a dream!

  21. I'm going off now to have a go at making these cookies... I'll let you know how I go :)

  22. Yum! This recipe is simple and full of all the good stuff.

  23. My dear Wills, it will be the first time in 25 years that I won't be making my iced sugar cookies. Too much going on, but next year my Bella and Ollie will be just about the right age to intoduce the tradition to. I think my old gang are burned out making them, so the new up and coming ones will be delighted and will make me happy too. Last Christmas, per your instruction, I bought Joyeux Noel and watched it Christmas night. I was blown away by it and even downloaded the songs on my ipod. That was surely a gift I loved. I'm going to make the family watch it this year and also got a movie named The Secret of Roan Inish to watch. Merry Christmas, Wills.

  24. Willow, sorry to hear your nest is empty. My daughter will love you for these sugar biscuits. We shall have a bake tomorrow. Maybe we'll leave Santa one. xx

  25. Cookie update :- Not perfect for a first go but none of the masses are complaining as they ask for another!
    A good tradition!!
    Thanks and Happy Christmas from my family to yours :)

  26. I've never heard of sugar cookies but as soon as Mr FF returns with my little car (he woke me up at 4am on Monday to say that his battery was flat and could he take my car to Paris) I'll pop out and get some fresh eggs and make these two recipes. I could do the icing right now actually but better to wait for the cookies, eh?

  27. Willow,
    While the Sugar Cookie is thee predominate confection to grace our Christmas side board, rel prefers the scent and tingle of the gingerbread boys as he scarfs them down almost as fast as they dance from the oven.
    Ahhhhh....the aroma of the Christmas kitchen!

  28. Delicious recipe Willow...they sound very melt in the mouth scrumptious. Have a very happy Christmas and a wonderful New Year, xv.

  29. Donna, you are going to LOVE "The Secret of Roan Inish". I like it so much, I have a copy in my little DVD library. It's a real treat!

  30. Bless you. I was looking around for a new recipe and have finally found it. Wonderful!!

  31. Irene, the key is rolling them out thick (1/4 inch) and don't use extra flour. Then watch them carefully while baking and don't let them brown. Hope your next batch is better!

  32. Goody! I love sugar cookies and the recipe looks so simple even I will be able to bake them. I usually leave the baking to my daughter.

  33. Hello Willow,

    You know, you could have had the sprinkles just the same; in fact your 'three ships' might just be a tad disappointed! I fancy having a go at baking some biscotti. They're supposed to be hard and crunchy, so no-one will know if they're overbaked! Slangevar!

  34. Just the recipe I have been looking for. Gonna have little grands over tomorrow and those are perfect. Love all your movie suggestions. Have the best Christmas ever.

  35. Thank you! I have already put the bowl with the measured out butter in a warm spot (after I figured out that 1 cup is 225 grams, since butter does not come in handy quarter pound sticks but in slabs of 250 grams).

    What else is waiting in your cookie jar?

    I have baked vanilla crescents, cardamom slippers and double chocolate pistachio crescents. So far.

  36. I'm getting ready to hit the kitchen now ... let the baking begin. Starting with ginger cookies today. Love the way the home smells afterward! :-)

  37. I have already made some this year, but yours look lovely. I am printing out your recipe. I love your blog!

  38. The grandkids are coming over tomorrow to bake cookies and I'm going to use your recipe. The timing is perfect.
    Your blog adds just a touch of grandure to my carefree existence. I check it every morning. Thanks and have a happy holiday.
    Ricky in Winnipeg

  39. A home made, sugar cookie, cut out WITH icing is MY FAVORITE too! I like the colored sugars though! NOT the candies, non-pareils, and red hots etc...they hide the TRUE deliciousness of the cookie!

    I consider myself a PRUDE in this area!

  40. I am drooling here. That looks not only beautiful but delicious!

  41. Cookies are in the oven! :-)

  42. I crave sugar cookies, especially iced ones.

    But with the sweet tooth I possess Id love anything related to sweet.

    Merry Christmas!

  43. Thank You for the recipe. My daughter and I want to do some baking today. Will try them out.
    We don't have any snow for Christmas this year (Oregon), so I'm reveling in the pictures from your last post - making myself tiny and inserting myself, boot-clad into them. Watch out! I'm making snowballs!

  44. Sound yummie to me!
    Here is wishing you and all you family a very happy Christmas willow.

  45. Um...oops! I ate all the cookies ere I could ice them, heh, heh...no worries tho'( grabs spatula... )

    A wonderful Christmas my you and yours enjoy, Willow! Peace and hugs :)

  46. Sounds delish, Willow!

    Just popped round to extend my best wishes to you and your family for a very Merry and Blessed Christmas!


    (Now off to read your Poetry Go-kart piece.)

  47. These look scrumtious, Willow, and so festive too! I love aniseed biscuits at Christmas cut out into seasonal shapes.

    I've not had much time for blogging recently, so just in case I don't get the chance to visit again before Christmas Day, I wish you a lovely Christmas, dear Willow, and thank you for your wonderful bloggy friendship through the year!

  48. I can't wait to try this recipe. We've made two batches of cut-out cookies this December and both recipes turned out way too flour-y -- this especially bothers the professor!

  49. This yummy recipe will have to wait until next year Willow. If I tried to do them in our current very dodgy old oven the results would be less than satisfactory. It's just about to meet its Maker via a quick blow from MOTH's sledgehammer in our next round of renovations. Its replacement will do your Sugar Cookies justice I promise.
    Millie ^_^

  50. Your recipe sounds yummy, and I'm saving it for later in the year. I like to add cinnamon to give it a slightly spicy flavour.

  51. I've never had a roll-out sugar cookie recipe that I truly loved. I can't wait to try this one.

    Btw, did I tell you what a success I had with your molasses cookies? I put some on the cookie tray I made for the school secretary, and she begged me for the recipe. (Interesting story: Her mother grew up in a German community in Uraguay, and apparently she always made cookies which tasted just like yours. For the secretary, it was like finding the lost chord! Do you remember where you got that recipe?)

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  53. Oh, they would be so delicious with this big mug of strong roast black coffee i'm having now while i can feel the cold trying to battle in against the windows. . .
    Have a great holiday :)

  54. I have never ever ever baked cookies before. I also bombed chemistry. The processes seem the same to my brain. But I am truly tempted by your recipe and pictures. So please send positive vibes my way? I may just give it a try Christmas Day. (eeks!)

  55. Oh, wow! I love sugar cookies!


Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.
― O. Henry (and me)