Remember to be patient—let the dough chill until it's firm. Then when you want to roll the dough, only roll a small piece at a time. Pounding the chilled dough with your rolling pin will soften it to the point that you can squeeze it together, flatten it out and start to roll. You'll need flour under and on the dough to prevent sticking, but don't use a lot of flour at a time It's much better to scatter a pinch of flour at a time under and on the dough so that you can repeat that often without fear of adding too much flour.
Recipe from Bake!
- Yield:About forty 2 to 2 1/2-inch cookies
- Active time: about 30 minutes
- Total time:45 minutes, plus dough refridgeration
- 2 1/4 cups (10.5 ounces) all-purpose flour (spoon flour into dry-measure cup and level off)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) light brown sugar, firmly packed
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
Stir the flour, baking soda, and salt together and set aside.
Beat the butter, brown sugar, and vanilla with the paddle attachment of an electric mixer on medium speed until well mixed, about a minute. Beat in the egg and yolk one at a time, beating smooth after each addition. Scrape the bowl and beater and beat again for half a minute.
Stop the mixer, add the flour mixture, and beat in on lowest speed. Remove the bowl and use a large rubber spatula to give a final mixing to the dough.
Scrape the dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap, fold the wrap over it and
press the dough to about 1/2-inch thick. Refrigerate until you are ready to bake the cookies, up to 2 days.
When you are ready to bake the cookies, set racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and cut it into quarters. Return 3 of
the pieces to the refrigerator. Place the piece of dough on a floured surface and gently knead it until it is slightly softened and malleable.
Flour the dough again and gently roll it out to 1/4-inch thick. Use a 2 to 2 1/2-inch plain cutter to cut cookies, placing them on one of the prepared pans about 3 inches apart in all directions to allow for spreading.
Repeat with the next piece of dough incorporating the scraps from the previous piece as you knead it. Continue cutting out cookies and repeat adding the scraps with the remaining pieces of dough. When you have nothing bust scraps left to roll, form the dough into a sausage shape and roll it to a rectangle as wide as the cutter you are using. Discard the last few scraps.
Bake the cookies until they are firm and dry looking, about 12 to 15 minutes. If your oven gives strong bottom heat, bake the pan of cookies on the lower rack stacked on another pan for insulation.
Slide the papers from the pans to racks to cool.