Maple-iced fall leaf sugar cookies.

Well fall is definitely here. It feels more like spring, truth be told, but its okay. I’m looking forward to the Macy*s Thanksgiving Day parade, wearing sweaters (which I haven’t done much of yet) and even more so, Starbucks Peppermint Hot Chocolate, which is my winter/Christmas shopping staple. The cold weather- not so much. But it would be nice to have some autumnal weather, not 70° degree weather. Thanks to global warming it’ll probably be 80° degrees until Thanksgiving and then it’ll drop to 25° degrees and we’ll all get pneumonia.

But in celebration of fall (which we have to remember, it still is!) I made some fall leaf sugar cookies. A departure from my usual repertoire, cupcakes… but let it never be said I’m predictable. I frosted them with a maple royal-icing type of deal, but plain vanilla is fine too, or even caramel or cinnamon or whatever you prefer. I just figured maple, leaf, you get the idea. Or use peppermint for Christmas cookies. I’m sure you can figure all that out on your own though.

SUGAR COOKIES

Get together:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • Powdered sugar, for rolling out dough

And then:

  1. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  2. Place butter and sugar in large bowl of electric stand mixer and beat until light in color. Add egg and milk and beat to combine. Put mixer on low speed, gradually add flour, and beat until mixture pulls away from the side of the bowl. Divide the dough in half, wrap in waxed paper, and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  3. Preheat oven to 375° degrees F.
  4. Sprinkle surface where you will roll out dough with powdered sugar. Remove 1 wrapped pack of dough from refrigerator at a time, sprinkle rolling pin with powdered sugar, and roll out dough to ¼-inch thick. Move the dough around and check underneath frequently to make sure it is not sticking. If dough has warmed during rolling, place cold cookie sheet on top for 10 minutes to chill.
  5. Cut into desired shape, place at least 1-inch apart on greased baking sheet, parchment, or silicone baking mat, and bake for 7 to 9 minutes or until cookies are just beginning to turn brown around the edges, rotating cookie sheet halfway through baking time.
  6. Let sit on baking sheet for 2 minutes after removal from oven and then move to complete cooling on wire rack. Serve as is or ice as desired. Store in airtight container for up to 1 week.

MAPLE ICING

Get this stuff:

  • 2 2/3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons milk
  • ½ teaspoon maple extract

Then you:

  1. In a small bowl, combine confectioners’ sugar and 3 tablespoons milk; stir well.
  2. Add additional milk to reach desired consistency. Stir in maple extract.

I used a maple extract that had a brown tint, so the icing is brown. I used a full teaspoon in my frosting and the maple wasn’t as bold as I thought. They taste like pancakes, actually, now that I think about it. So anyway use the ½ teaspoon and taste it, if you want more add the another ½. If you use a clear extract, you can use food coloring to achieve a similar effect of color. Or you could leave it white, depending on the type of cookie and holiday you are making it for. These are also really cute for cake decorating, to place around the bottom of a cake on a fancy pedestal…

My leaf cutter is huge, so these babies are like 5 inches long. Thats a lotta cookie. You of course can make whatever shape and size cookie you desire. I had so much fun making these! I hadn’t made sugar cookies in forever and I really forgot how much fun it can be.

As a shortcut, you can also use the Pillsbury sugar cookie dough. There aren’t many bakers or baking bloggers who would tell you that but in case you haven’t noticed, I’m not like other baking bloggers. Use shortcuts when ya can if you absolutely need to, theres no harm in it. Otherwise I would be remiss if I didn’t say nothing beats homemade cookies.

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