I like making these cookies as an alternative to gingerbread cookies. They still have the spice of gingerbread, but are a crisp and light cookie. It holds it’s shape wonderfully while baking- no worrying about ending up with unrecognizable blob cookies. It makes a GIANT batch of cookies- I usually get about 100 regular sized cut-outs, and close to 400 if I use mini cookie cutters. These are perfect for decorating with kids, at a cookie baking party, and a cute addition to any cookie plate. If you like the cookies a little darker, use molasses instead of honey.
3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour.
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup butter
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 tablespoons honey (or molasses)
1 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon orange or lemon zest
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar together until fluffy, 3-5 minutes. Add in egg, honey, water, and citrus zest; beat to combine well. Gradually add flour and spice mixture, and continue to beat to combine.
4. Cover and chill the dough for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
5. Work the dough a little bit before rolling to 1/8″ thick on a lightly floured surface. Cut with cookie cutters as desired. (It is easiest to work with a third or half the dough at a time. When you get down to a small piece of dough, knead it into the fresh dough from the refrigerator and continue working.)
6. Bake in the preheated 375 degree oven on ungreased baking sheets for 8 minutes. Cool on the baking sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
7. Decorate cookies as desired when completely cooled.
-For freezing: You can freeze the dough in a plastic bag for up to one month. Defrost in the refrigerator the night before you plan to roll it out.
2 cups sifted powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons of milk
1. Mix ingredients with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon to make a piping consistency. If the icing is too dry, add a teaspoon of milk at a time to thin until desired consistency is reached.
Recipes originally “Wishing Cookies” from an out of print book: Better Homes and Gardens Cookies for Christmas, (1985).