One of the best traditions associated with Christmas is the annual sugar cookie decoration. Each year I like to shake thing up a bit, trying different recipes or techniques. Last year I added some pink peppercorns to my sugar cookies that gave them a fruity slightly spicy bite. This year I decided to add freeze dried fruit to my icing. It all starts with the cookie dough itself and I wanted to give someone else’s recipe a spin. So I picked to make Paula Deen’s sugar cookies. I liked that her recipe contained powdered sugar and cream of tartar. While her recipe was actually featured in a wedding theme episode that are perfect for Christmas. Below you will find my notes from this recipe. Visit Food Network’s website to print out the full recipe.

1. I was concerned that the dough was going to be too dry at first, but just a little patience was needed.

2. I naturally used Christmas cookie cutters. I put 8 cookies on a sheet pan lined with a Slipat. I won’t recommend more than that as they do spread some. Chilling the dough before hand like instructed will help solidfy the butter, thus reducing spreading when baked.

3. The recipe says it makes 5 dozen cookies. Her cookie cutter must have been small as I had about 2 dozen.

4. The recommend 9 minute baking time worked perfect for me. It produced a cookie that had some bite on the outside but still was very tender on the inside. I am guessing if her cookies were smaller than were a lot more crunchy that mine.

5. I did not try her royal icing. I made my own icing using freeze dried fruit mixed with powdered sugar.

Overall I was very pleased with this recipe. It produced the kind of sugar cookie I liked. Firm enough to hold up to decorating by young kids but tender enough to please my palate. This recipe will find a place in my rotation. Kudos to Paula.

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