Saturday, September 29, 2012

Cinnamon Swirl Sugar Cookies

Kids are weird. I know this isn't news to most parents but every now and again, something happens that will remind me how strange kids can be.

I recently decided to make some cinnamon swirl sugar cookies after seeing a picture of some in my Pinterest feed. L loves to help when I do any sort of baking, but cookies are his ABSOLUTE FAVOURITE since he has discovered the joys of unbaked cookie dough. (M is a pretty big fan too!)

I decided to use one of the recipes I already had for sugar cookies which have been a huge hit every time I've made them, instead of using a packet mix as specified in the original recipe. I rolled out the dough, added the cinnamon sugar, rolled it back up and stuck it in the fridge to firm up. L enjoyed licking the beaters and bowl. After the allocated firming time, I took the rolled dough logs out of the fridge and sliced them into 1.5cm slices. I decided I didn't want weird looking cookies so I sliced the ends off first to make the roll neater and L obligingly ate them.

Once the cookies were baked, I removed them and let them cool overnight then, the next morning, I made up the icing/glaze and drizzled it over the top of the cookies. Then the weird thing happened. L decided he didn't want any of the cookies. He kept this stance up for three days. THREE DAYS. NO COOKIES.

On the fourth day, I was sharing a cookie with M for afternoon tea and I asked L why he was so against these cookies. After all, they had all his favourite things. Sugar cookie. Cinnamon sugar. Icing sugar. (Notice the trend?) He said that he didn't think they looked very nice once I had glazed them. If I had left them unglazed, then he would've tried them. I pointed out the glaze was icing sugar and milk. So he relented and had a bite of the cookie that I was sharing with M. He then declared that he loved them. And proceeded to eat the rest of my cookie.

Perhaps I should have left him thinking they weren't very nice so I didn't have to share them.

Anyway, here is the recipe!

Cinnamon Swirl Sugar Cookies (Adapted from this recipe and this recipe)

cookie dough -
2 1/2 cups self raising flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 (slightly rounded – not quite ¾) teaspoon salt
250 gm unsalted butter (if you use salted butter, use only ¼ tsp. salt), softened
2 cups castor sugar
3/4 teaspoon good vanilla extract
3 egg yolks
extra flour for dusting workbench
cinnamon swirl -
1 tbsp. butter, melted
¼ cup castor sugar
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
glaze -
¾ cup icing sugar
1 tbsp. milk


In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Beat in the vanilla then, one by one, beat in the egg yolks.

Slowly stir in the flour. Mix well.

(If not using for cinnamon swirl cookies, form into 2.5cm balls and place balls about 5cm apart on a non-stick or baking paper lined cookie sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes at 180C degrees or until the cookies start to brown around the edges. Let cool on cookie sheet for 2 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.)

On a floured surface, knead dough lightly, then divide dough into quarters. Roll each quarter out onto some baking paper to about 1/2 cm thickness.

Brush dough with melted butter. In a small bowl, mix together sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over dough.

Using the baking paper, roll dough into a log, starting at the long side. (If the dough tears at all, do not worry. Just pinch it back together, it will still bake up nicely.)

Wrap log in plastic wrap and pop dough in the freezer for about 20-30 minutes (until firm – not hard)

Heat oven to 180C degrees. Cover your baking sheet with baking paper.
Take dough out of freezer and cut into 1.5cm slices. (If dough tears a little as you cut it just pinch it together with your fingers.)
Place slices about 5cm apart on cookie sheet.

Bake 10-12 minutes or until edges are lightly golden brown.

Cool for about 2 minutes, remove from cookie sheet to cooling rack. Cool completely.

In a small bowl, mix icing sugar and milk until smooth (adding a tad more milk if necessary).
Drizzle icing over cooled cookies (making sure you have aluminium foil or waxed paper underneath cooling racks to catch excess icing). Alternately, you can place the icing into a bag, snip the corner off and "pipe" the icing onto the cookies.

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