Hello, hello my baking friends! I’m getting back into the swing of fall baking after a hiatus of sorts, and am so excited to share this perfect, keep-its-shape, slightly crispy, somewhat spicy nutmegy cut-out cookie recipe.
The idea for the nutmeg flavor came from my friend Ruth, who makes what she calls Apple Blossom cookies. Her dough is similar to a fluffy (not a keep-its-shape kind of a cookie) sugar cookie with an added nutmeg spice. She sandwiches apple jelly between two cookies, and mmm oh so good! You could do the same with this recipe for another layer of goodness, but I also love them simply on their own or paired with royal icing.
For this batch of cookies I used vanilla royal icing (you can find the recipe here), but I’m thinking an almond version would be so nice too! It’s a simple substitute of almond extract for the vanilla, in case you’d like to try.
Either way, have fun baking and enjoy sampling!
If you have any questions or comments please feel free to drop me a line below in the comment section or on social media. You can find me on Facebook, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and YouTube.
p.s. A few decorating tips and cookie cutter sources below.
Nutmeg Sugar Cut-Out Cookie Recipe
- 2 cups unsalted butter (at room temperature)
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 5 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder (*take this out if you don't want your cookies to spread)
- 1 tsp salt
- Cream the butter and sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer on low to medium speed. (Use the paddle attachment). Mix until thoroughly incorporated - for about one minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a plastic spatula and mix again for a few seconds more. Over mixing the butter and sugar in this step will cause too much air to be incorporated into the dough. If you'd like a light and fluffy cookie, that's ideal, however the dough will spread more during baking; not ideal if you'd like the cookie to hold its shape.
- Add ground nutmeg and mix.
- Add eggs slowly and mix. Scrape down the bowl with your spatula at least once and mix.
- Whisk your dry ingredients together. (Flour and salt, and baking powder if you're using it).
- Add all of the flour mixture to the bowl. Place a large tea towel or two small tea towels between the edge of the bowl and the electric mixer so that the flour won't escape. Mix on low speed for 30 seconds. Remove the tea towels and observe the dough mixing; when it clumps around the paddle attachment it's ready. It's also important at this stage not to over mix the dough (the gluten in the flour develop and the dough can become tough).
- Roll the dough out between 2 large pieces of parchment paper. Place on a baking sheet and into the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour.
- Cut out cookie shapes. Place on parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Re-roll scraps and repeat.
- Put cookie dough shapes back into the fridge for 10 minutes to 1 hour to chill again. They will then hold their shape better when baked.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F or 176°C.
- Bake cookies for 8-12 minutes or until the edges become golden brown. The baking time will depend on the size of your cookie.
- Let cookies cool to room temperature and decorate!
A few notes about the recipe:
*Butter - The butter needs to be soft, or room temperature. I leave mine out the night before I do my baking. If you forget, you can grate the butter on the largest hole of your box grater, so that the sugar and butter will mix together better.
*Flour - If your dough seems too sticky once you've mixed all the ingredients together, add flour slowly until you're happy with the texture. Alternatively, be careful to only use 5 cups of flour... Too much flour can mean a dry and crumbly dough.
*Baking powder - I hardly use any baking powder in my recipe because the dough will spread and rise more during baking, thereby making the shape of the cookie less crisp. The only time I use it now, is if I'm just making round shortbread cookies and I don't care about the cookies spreading.
*Chill your dough if it gets too soft work with. It's a softer, sometimes sticky dough (depending on your environment as well), but in my humble opinion, makes up for it in taste.
*Read these tips here on stopping dough from spreading.
*Link to post on stopping dough from spreading HERE.
As I’ve received quite a few questions about cookie thickness (I should have use perfection strips for these cookies, each batch is a bit different as I eyeballed this time), here is post for you on that.
Cookie Decorating Tips
What you’ll need (these are affiliate links):
- Piping Tips – PME #1.5, PME #2 and PME #3 (I used a few more tips, please leave me a comment below if you have questions)
- Piping Bags
- Gel paste colors
- Scribe Tool or Toothpicks
Decorating Steps and Cookie Cutter Sources
This video on outlining and flooding is a good place to start if you’re new to decorating cookies with royal icing. These cookie decorating basics YouTube videos may also be helpful to get you started.
Thanks to bon_farine (Instagram) for the basket design inspiration! The basket cutter can be found at CopperGifts, here. For those of you who have asked, the royal icing consistency for piping the basket lines is fairly thick, like toothpaste. Here is a video tutorial for you on piping lines if you’re interested.
A similar basket weave video tutorial I’ve made can be found here.
Click here for a pumpkin cookie video tutorial.
A hedgehog cookie video tutorial can be found here.
Some tips on decorating these turkey cookies can be found here.
I’ve finally started playing around with airbrushing… For these simple leaf cookies I used a DinkyDoodle airbrush from How Sweet is That?’s shop.