Stained Glass Sugar Cookies
New Media Publishing / Photography: Flat Art Studios.com / Stylist: Abigail Donnelly
Provided by: Gina Marie Miraglia Eriquez
Want something really special for the kids? Hard candies melt into dazzling colors in these sugar cookies, creating your own edible stained-glass windows. They make great gifts and tree ornaments, too.
- Whisk together flour and salt in a small bowl.
- Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes in a standing mixer (preferably fitted with paddle attachment) or 6 minutes with a handheld, then beat in egg and vanilla. Add flour mixture and mix at low speed until just combined.
- Form dough into 2 disks and chill, each disk wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 2 hours.
- While dough chills, unwrap candies and separate by color in small heavy-duty sealable plastic bags. Seal bags, forcing out air, then coarsely crush candies by wrapping each bag in a kitchen towel and pounding bags with a rolling pin.
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Roll out 1 piece of dough into a 9-inch round (1/8 inch thick) on a well-floured surface with floured rolling pin (keep remaining dough chilled). Cut out as many cookies as possible from dough with a large cutter (about a 2-inch cutter) and transfer to a parchment-paper-lined baking sheet, arranging cookies about 1 inch apart. Cut out centers from cookies with small cutter (about 3/4 to 1-inch) and add to scraps. Spoon about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed candy (depending on size of cutout) in center of each cookie. (If you want to use these cookies as tree ornaments, make a hole with a drinking straw at the top of the cookie for hanging.)
- Bake in middle of oven until edges are golden, 10 to 12 minutes, then cool cookies completely on baking sheet on a rack, about 10 minutes. Transfer with a metal spatula to a plate or an airtight container. Gather scraps and chill until firm enough to re-roll, 10 to 15 minutes. Make more cookies with remaining dough and scraps (re-roll once) in same manner on cooled baking sheet. Cookies keep, layered between sheets of wax paper or parchment paper, in an airtight container at room temperature, 1 week.
- Make ahead: Dough can be chilled up to 3 days.