A fun way to win the heart of your favorite valentine. Here it is, folks. One sugar cookie at a time. And if your favorite valentine happens to be a little person, let them help you with this. You’ll not only win their heart. You’ll be their favorite playmate. This is like messin’ with Play-Doh. Only you end up with yummy treats. A sure winner.
The ingredient list is basic. Lots of butter. An egg. Flour, not-too-much sugar, salt, baking powder & vanilla extract. Oh …and if you want to fancy them up a bit, add some almond extract. I love that you can get the dough prepared then dive right in. No waiting necessary.
The dough will appear to be crumbly but fear not …it all comes together when you roll it out. Depending on how many colors you choose to use for your designs, divide the dough into equal portions. I used three here …one natural, one slightly tinted, one heavily tinted.
I used natural red food dye made from plants for this. As a result, the color is more like a dusty rose rather than a vibrant red. I’m fine with that since the color is actually very pleasing. I will not ever use the food coloring that you typically find in the supermarket since it is very unhealthy and contains dangerous additives. Just a personal preference.
Start out with the patchwork cookies. Roll out each ball of dough to about 3/16” to 1/4” thickness. My adjustable rolling pin makes this part so easy …always guarantees the thickness of my dough. Cut out large hearts from each then cut out a small heart from within each large heart. Swap out the smaller hearts so that they are paired with a large heart of a contrasting color.
Before these guys are baked, sprinkle them with a bit of extra sugar. You’ll be glad you did. The dough is not overly sweet so the extra sugar is a welcome addition. I use Bob’s Red Mill Decorative Sparkling Sugar …the coarse texture is perfect.
Now let’s really get into the whole Play-Doh thing. Take the separate piles of dough that you have left over from cutting out the hearts. Roll each one out separately again. Now cut narrow strips of dough from each one. You can make the strips wider than I’ve done or you can make them varying widths. Whatever you like. No rules here.
When you have your stripes all lined up as you like them, go over them very lightly with your rolling pin to seal the edges. Once again, sprinkle them with a bit of sparkling sugar if you desire.
You’ll have a small pile of remnants remaining at this point. Gather them up and gently roll them out to make marbled-effect cookies.
heart cutout cookies
Recipe from Better Homes & Gardens
One sugar cookie dough recipe using several distinct techniques yields endless sweet ways to say "I love you." Make them as Valentine's Day cookies or any other day of the year you want to spread love.
- 1 1/2 cups butter, softened (3 sticks)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (or gluten-free flour)
- red food coloring
- sparkling sugar, for finishing (optional)
Preheat oven to 375°F. In a large bowl, beat butter with a mixer on medium to high 30 seconds. Add granulated sugar and baking powder. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg, vanilla, and, if desired, almond extract until combined. Beat in salt and as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour and mix well until fully incorporated.
On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough to 3/16- to 1/4-inch thickness. Using 2- to 3-inch cookie cutters, cut dough into desired shapes. (Dip cutters in flour to prevent sticking.) Place cutouts 1-inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Repeat with the remaining dough. Bake 6 to 8 minutes or until edges are firm but not brown. Remove; cool on wire rack.
Patchwork Cookies: Prepare dough as directed in Step 1. Divide dough into two or three portions and add food coloring to portions as desired. Roll out each portion as directed. Cut out large hearts from each then cut out a small heart from within each large heart. Swap out the smaller hearts so that they are paired with a large heart of a contrasting color. If desired, sprinkle each cutout lightly with sparkling sugar. Bake as directed.
Striped Cookies: Prepare cookie dough through Step 1. Divide dough into three equal portions. Using food coloring, dye portions various shades of pink and/or red, leaving one portion of dough plain. Working in batches, roll out dough portions and cut into thin strips. Arrange strips next to each other and push together; lightly roll over with rolling pin to seal. Cut out and sprinkle lightly with sparkling sugar, if desired. Bake as directed.
Marbled-Effect Cookies: You’ll have a small pile of remnants remaining at this point. Gather them up and gently roll them out to make marbled-effect cookies. Cut out and sprinkle lightly with sparkling sugar, if desired. Bake as directed.
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