We love making sugar cookies for any holiday, or in between holidays. I use a recipe from the Mennonite Community Cookbook, edited by Mary Emma Showalter. Few ingredients, no chilling, and perfect texture ever time make this one more treasure from my Mennonite friends.
My kids love to do the measuring and mixing. I place the flour and the measuring cup on an old (see it doesn't look good!) cookie sheet to conserve any spillage while my daughter spoons the flour into the measuring cup, Then we work together to level it with a knife, and count out the number of cups needed. Perfect toddler math lesson and motor skill practice!
The reason I love this recipe is that as soon as the dough is mixed, it's ready to roll. I clean a section of the table and use the spilled flour from the cookie sheet to flour it and the rolling pin.
This week we used different sized hearts. She really wanted to use them all every time, so I explained that the best strategy was to work biggest to smallest.
After the cookies were baked and cooled I mixed a little milk with powdered sugar and added some sprinkles. (Hint: Mix in just a little milk at a time, and your frosting won't be runny like mine.)
This recipe was submitted by Mrs. Simon Gingerich.
1 1/2 cups butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 cups flour
I like to add 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of vanilla with the wet ingredients to give a little flavor.
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. (190 C). Mix the wet ingredients well, then add the flour little by little. Roll out to about 1/8 inch (0.5 cm) thickness and cut with cookie cutters. Bake until done, about 10 minutes.
Baking with kids is a great way for them to learn. It's also a great way to stress myself out. I always allow at least four times the time it would take me to accomplish the task by myself, and don't expect to multi-task. I keep the ingredients on the counter, and give my kids exactly what I want them to have at that moment. I expect them to entirely need to change clothes when we're done, and I banish them from the kitchen while I finish baking and clean up. So far, they're always eager to join in when it's time to bake.
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