1/2 cup butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
3 cups flour, measured and then sifted
1/4 cup cold water
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large mixing bowl with heavy-duty mixer, or by hand with wooden spoon, cream butter until fluffy. Gradually cream in sugar and the egg.
Mix in 1 cup of the flour, then mix in the water and vanilla. Mix in the remaining flour and the salt. Remove dough from the bowl and flatten into a disk. Wrap well in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1/2 hour or up to three days.
Cut the dough into three pieces and return to the fridge. Lightly flour a smooth counter top and roll out a piece of the dough, using a lightly floured rolling pin. Roll until approximately 1/8-inch thick.
Dip cookie cutters into a little flour (or powdered sugar, if you wish) and cut out desired shapes. Transfer cookies to an ungreased baking sheet and bake in center of preheated oven for 7 to 8 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. Remove cookies from sheet and allow them to cool on a rack. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough. When cookies are cool, transfer them to cookie jar or tin. These keep very well and actually are more flavorful after a couple of days.

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