A Month of Cookies

One basic cookies dough makes the building blocks for 30 different kinds of cookies — just in time for the holidays. Grab the kids and get rolling.

by Sandy Gluck / Photo by Getty RF

Inspired to bake? Make cookies for a cause. Visit glad.com/gladtogive to see how some lovin’ from your oven can help out Cookies for Kids’ Cancer.

Basic Cookie Dough
Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies

1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
1-cup sugar
1 large egg
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, with an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla until well combined.

2. With the mixer on low speed, beat in the flour mixture until just combined. Tear off 2 sheets of waxed paper, each about 12-inches. Spoon half the dough lengthwise down the center of each sheet of paper forming a strip about 8 inches long. With your hands, roll each strip into a log about 2 inches wide, and 1 inch thick. Wrap the logs up in the paper.

3. Freeze several hours until firm or freeze up to 3 months

4. To bake: preheat oven to 400. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Unwrap frozen dough and with a sharp knife, slice 1/4-inch thick. Bake until golden around the edges, rotating baking sheets from top to bottom and front to back. With a wide, thin metal spatula, remove from baking sheets to wire rack to cool completely.

1. Ginger Cookies: Add 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger and 1/8 teaspoon dry mustard powder to flour mixture. Beat 2 tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger in to mixture when adding egg.

2. Peanut Cookies: Grind enough peanuts to make 1/3 cup finely ground. Reduce flour to 1 1/3 cups and stir ground peanuts into remaining flour mixture. Add 2 tablespoons finely chopped peanuts when adding egg.

3. Espresso-Almond Cookies: Add 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder to flour mixture. Reduce sugar to 2/3 cup and add 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar. Add 1/8 teaspoon almond extract when adding vanilla. Fold in 1/3 cup sliced almonds after adding flour.

4. Molasses Cookies: Increase flour to 1 3/4 cups, swap in 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar for 1/4 cup granulated, and add 3 tablespoons molasses when beating butter and sugar.

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