This past weekend the hubby and I went to eat Sunday lunch with my family. My mom and sister were in charge of the salad and lasagna (both were amazing by the way) so that left the dessert to me. I always love whipping up anything with sugar, so this was fine with me :)
I had originally planned on taking Irish Car Bomb Brownies, but those were a HUGE flop (I'll share more about that later this week). So I was back to square one. I didn't want anything super heavy since we were already eating lasagna, and I thought about doing a cookie since I haven't blogged many such recipes.
I feel like the sugar cookie is something that, for the most part, everyone loves. Some people have different aversions when it comes to things like oatmeal raisin (raisins? ew!) or chocolate chip (some like thick and fluffy, others like thin and "greasy"), but no one can really complain when it comes to good 'ole plain sugar cookies.
I like my sugar cookies thick, fluffy, chewy and soft. Cornstarch is an ingredient that keeps baked goods from spreading, so I knew I wanted to add some into this recipe to keep the cookies from getting too flat. I played around with the proportions and ingredients (using both cake flour and all purpose) and settled on the recipe below.
I love me some almond flavoring, but you could definitely flavor these to your liking. I love the twist that almond extract gives these cookies, but using another extract won't affect the texture of the cookie.
I'm not trying to toot my own horn, but these are the best sugar cookies I've ever had. No lie. I made them pretty small, but I'm sure you could make them larger if you were willing to adjust the baking time.
Soft and Chewy Almond Sugar Cookies CCK Original
1 1/2 C white sugar
2/3 C unsalted butter (cold)
2/3 C shortening (room temp)
2 tsp almond extract
2 3/4 C cake flour
1 C all purpose flour
1 Tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
sugar in the raw (I like raw sugar for this, but any coarse sugar or sprinkles would work)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare baking sheet.
Cream sugar, butter and shortening. Stir in eggs and almond extract. Combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder and salt and add to butter/egg mixture.
Use electric mixture to ensure dough is thoroughly combined.
Chill dough in fridge for 30 minutes.
Bake cookies for 7 minutes. Remove from oven and gently press the tops of the cookies flat with the back of a spoon while they are still warm and pliable. (The cornstarch keeps them from spreading so they will be mounded up).
Return bowl of dough to fridge in between baking batches.
Remove to cooling rack. Allow to cool completely.
~DO NOT bake longer than 7-8 minutes!! They may seem under-baked, but when they cool they will firm up.