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The Unconventional Sugar Cookie

Updated: May 11, 2021

Correct us if we're wrong, but there is something about soft, super market, circle shaped sugar cookies topped with classic frosting. Despite their juvenile appearance,

we can't help slipping a box of them in our cart, discreetly wedged

between the broccoli rabe and kombucha.

For the sake of nostalgia and in a pique of 2020 baking fever,

we set out on a mission to create a touch more sophisticated but equally soft and addictive sugar cookie to level-up the grocery store standard.

 

May we introduce...

"The Unconventional" *


Topped with soft meringue and JEMstone Maple Cube shavings, the soft, perfectly baked sugar cookie gets a taste of glamor.


For the cookie....

We looked to Sally McKenney, creator of Sally's Baking Addiction blog, for our sugar cookie recipe. Let us be the first to tell you, Sally did not disappoint. Below, we've included Sally's recipe for "The Best Sugar Cookies" - check out her site for additional baking tips specific to this recipe.









Ingredients:

2 and 1/4 cups (281g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar

1 large egg, at room temperature

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1/4 or 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional, but makes the flavor outstanding)*


Instructions:

Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.


In a large bowl using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on high speed until completely smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes.

Add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract (if using) and beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.


Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. Dough will be relatively soft. If the dough seems too soft and sticky for rolling, add 1 more Tablespoon of flour.


Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Place each portion onto a piece of lightly floured parchment paper or a lightly floured silicone baking mat.


With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness. Use more flour if the dough seems too sticky. The rolled-out dough can be any shape, as long as it is evenly 1/4-inch thick.


Lightly dust one of the rolled-out doughs with flour. Place a piece of parchment on top. (This prevents sticking.) Place the 2nd rolled-out dough on top. Cover with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours and up to 2 days.


Once chilled, preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.


Carefully remove the top dough piece from the refrigerator. If it’s sticking to the bottom, run your hand under it to help remove it.


Using a cookie cutter, cut the dough into shapes. Re-roll the remaining dough and continue cutting until all is used. Repeat with 2nd piece of dough. (Note: It doesn’t seem like a lot of dough, but you get a lot of cookies from the dough scraps you re-roll.)


Arrange cookies on baking sheets 3 inches apart. Bake for 11-12 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. If your oven has hot spots, rotate the baking sheet halfway through bake time.


Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating.


Plain or decorated cookies stay soft for about 5 days when covered tightly at room temperature. For longer storage, cover and refrigerate for up to 10 days.


For the 'Unconventional' meringue topping:

(we know, typically meringues are made with cane sugar and cream of tartar ....but happy accidents occur in baking, especially when you run out of ingredients while trying to make royal icing, but trust us - this is good)


Ingredients:


2 pasteurized** egg whites

1/4 cup of confectioner's sugar


Instructions:


Remove eggs from the refrigerator and separate, as they will separate best cold.


Allow egg whites to reach room temperature to allow them to whip to their fullest.


Whip the egg whites and confectioners sugar together until they are glossy, smooth, and fluffy.


Spread "meringue" evenly on cookies and shave fresh JEMstone Maple Cube sugar on top.


Option:

-If you have a kitchen torch, this is a great opportunity to use it and make some beautiful golden 'caramelization' of the maple shavings and "meringue".

- If you do not have a kitchen torch (like us) but do have a gas oven, you can turn your oven to broil and place 3-4 cookies on a baking sheet and CAREFULLY create the same golden effect under the flames of the broiler.





*Raw Egg Whites Disclaimer:

The topping for this cookie is original but inspired by recipe instructions of traditional royal icing - therefore, like royal icing, it does contain raw egg whites. Therefore we must include the following warning : consumption of raw or undercooked eggs, shellfish and meat may increase the risk of foodborne illness.

**To reduce risk, make sure that you are using fresh, pasteurized eggs.



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