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Baking Cookies

Make 'em Love You!

February 11, 2020

I cannot prove that my cookie baking has made my children, or nieces and nephews love me more, but it certainly hasn’t make them love me less. So, once again, as a public service to you moms out there who never seem to be able to do enough for your kids, I am giving you my favorite sugar cookie recipe. Gramma Ev’s Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies. Although they’re not as easy as buying some, or cutting up the Pillsbury ones, they taste a whole lot better.

Gramma Ev was my college roomate’s kickass grandmother, who used to send us boxes of these sugar cookies every Christmas. They had the teeniest aroma of cigarette smoke because Gramma Ev enjoyed a puff or two. But we never cared, we devoured them as college-age women with really great metabolism tend to do. You can read more about Gramma Ev and her darling granddaughter in this post I wrote years ago about The Power of a Sugar Cookie.

I’ve seen professional decorators outline sugar cookies with piping bags, to make sure the outlines are perfect, then tediously fill in the centers. God bless them. They clearly have no other full time job. For the rest of you, go ahead, use a butter knife and just be careful around the edges. They’ll look a little more homemade, but trust me, your kids WILL NOT care. And I like that they look homemade. It shows that someone took time to make them, but only HAD so much time, so the cookies are that much more special. (That’s my rationalization and I’m sticking with it.)

That very bottom red heart cookie was made of the scraps of the dough, that’s why it looks a little rough around the edges. I never throw anything away — I’m great in a recession.

So, please have a wonderful Valentine’s Day. Go buy yourself flowers if you don’t have a special someone. That’s what I do every year and I love them just as much as if Pierce Brosnan had sent them to me. (Well, maybe slightly less, but you get the idea.) Be your own best Valentine. You deserve it. And if you have time, bake the cookies. Everyone loves them.

Gramma Ev’s Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies

Yields1 Serving

 1 cup sugar
 3 cups Unbleached flour
 1 ½ tsp baking powder
 ½ tsp salt
 1 cup soft butter (Not unsalted)
 1 slightly beaten egg
 3 tbsp evaporated milk
 1 tsp vanilla
Vanilla Icing
 2 tbsp butter ( not unsalted)
 ½ tsp vanilla extract
 2 tbsp half and half or whipping cream (I prefer whipping cream)
 a generous dash of salt

1

Mix together the sugar, flour, baking powder, in a large bowl and salt and set it aside. In another bowl.

2

Cut in the softened butter with a pastry cutter until it resembles fine crumbs.

3

Mix together the evaporated milk, egg, and vanilla and add it to the butter and flour mixture. Mix it together with your hands until it forms a smooth ball. Wrap it in plastic wrap and chill it for an hour. (I've baked them without chilling them and they always turn out fine, but I've also let them chill overnight and they turn out fine too, they're just harder to roll out, but soften up as you roll them.)

4

Lightly flour a surface and cut a chunk of the dough off. Working it with your hands flatten it out on the floured surface, then roll it with a rolling pin until it's about an eighth of an inch thick. I like them a little thicker, but It's up to you.

Then bake them at 400 degrees for six minutes. Remove them from the pan and place them on a sheet of aluminum foil to cool. This makes a fair number of cookies, I'm going to say around 3 dozen at least, so be ready to do some icing.

Vanilla Icing
5

Melt the butter then add the confectioners sugar, the vanilla and the half and half or whipping cream. Whisk with a whisk until smooth. Add salt to taste. Then ice the cookies

Ingredients

 1 cup sugar
 3 cups Unbleached flour
 1 ½ tsp baking powder
 ½ tsp salt
 1 cup soft butter (Not unsalted)
 1 slightly beaten egg
 3 tbsp evaporated milk
 1 tsp vanilla
Vanilla Icing
 2 tbsp butter ( not unsalted)
 ½ tsp vanilla extract
 2 tbsp half and half or whipping cream (I prefer whipping cream)
 a generous dash of salt

Directions

1

Mix together the sugar, flour, baking powder, in a large bowl and salt and set it aside. In another bowl.

2

Cut in the softened butter with a pastry cutter until it resembles fine crumbs.

3

Mix together the evaporated milk, egg, and vanilla and add it to the butter and flour mixture. Mix it together with your hands until it forms a smooth ball. Wrap it in plastic wrap and chill it for an hour. (I've baked them without chilling them and they always turn out fine, but I've also let them chill overnight and they turn out fine too, they're just harder to roll out, but soften up as you roll them.)

4

Lightly flour a surface and cut a chunk of the dough off. Working it with your hands flatten it out on the floured surface, then roll it with a rolling pin until it's about an eighth of an inch thick. I like them a little thicker, but It's up to you.

Then bake them at 400 degrees for six minutes. Remove them from the pan and place them on a sheet of aluminum foil to cool. This makes a fair number of cookies, I'm going to say around 3 dozen at least, so be ready to do some icing.

Vanilla Icing
5

Melt the butter then add the confectioners sugar, the vanilla and the half and half or whipping cream. Whisk with a whisk until smooth. Add salt to taste. Then ice the cookies

Gramma Ev’s Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies
  • Reply
    Dustin Tyner
    February 14, 2020 at 10:19 am

    Thank you for the cookies at the office today. The were DELICIOUS–worth every calorie! xoxo

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      February 14, 2020 at 10:36 am

      Awww love you Dustin! You are very welcome! On Valentine’s Day, the calories don’t count.

  • Reply
    Larry Fojtik
    February 12, 2020 at 9:22 am

    Great metabolism and piping bags.. HEARTS to you, Fran! Xx

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      February 13, 2020 at 11:31 pm

      Larry you are so dang wonderful, it’s almost unfathomable. Thank you for following and being such a fabulous co-worker and having the excellent taste to choose a woman from Pittsburgh!

  • Reply
    carolyn riley
    February 12, 2020 at 6:46 am

    Just realized this is our 50th VD Day!

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      February 13, 2020 at 11:30 pm

      Oh My God Car, you are right! Happy VD to the best friend a person could ever hope to have. I couldn’t believe my luck that you actually wanted to hang out with me in 9th grade! Best day of my life! Love you. Hope you have a wonderful day!

  • Reply
    Bernie Tunno
    February 11, 2020 at 7:43 pm

    You might want to rethink the Happy Early VD commentt!

  • Reply
    Nicol Z
    February 11, 2020 at 7:26 am

    Love to you and your cookies, Fran. You always have two valentines over here xoxox

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      February 11, 2020 at 9:52 am

      Right back at ya! Happy EARLY VD! Coffee soon! xoxo

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