cardamom clementine sugar cookies

Recipe printed from chiknpastry
Cardamom-Clementine Sugar Cookies
Adapted from Bon Appetit, December 2009; makes ~55 cookies

these are extra special sugar cookies. and not just b/c of the extra flavors. the dough is extremely soft, even if refrigerated as suggested in the instructions. but even if you have to re-refrigerate them a few times between cutting the cookies, it's well worth it.

2 1/2 c ap flour
1 1/4 t g cardamom
1/2 t salt
1 1/2 c (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temp
1 c + 2 T sugar
1 1/2 t finely grated clementine (or orange) peel
1/2 t vanilla extract
1 large egg, room temp
1/2 c powdered sugar (optional)
1 T milk (optional; may need a bit more)
icing dye for colored glaze (optional)

special instruments
cookie cutters
rolling pin

  1. Whisk flour, cardamom, and 1/2 t salt in medium bowl to blend. Using electric or stand mixer, beat butter in large bowl until creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add 1 c plus 2 T sugar; beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in finely grated clementine peel and vanilla. Add egg; beat to blend. Add 1/3 of flour mixture; beat on low speed just to blend. Add remaining flour in 2 additions, beating on low speed just until blended. Refrigerate until firm enough to shape, about 1 hour.
  2. Divide dough in half. Form each half into ball. Flatten into disks and wrap in plastic. Chill until firm enough to roll out, about 45 minutes. Keep refrigerated. Let chilled dough stand at room temperature until soft enough to roll out, about 15 minutes.
  3. Position 1 rack in top third and 1 rack in bottom third of oven; preheat to 350°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Roll out 1 dough disk on lightly floured surface to generous 1/8-inch thickness. Cut out cookies using festive cookie cutters. Carefully transfer cookies to prepared baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart. Gather dough scraps into ball. Flatten, cover, and freeze dough until firm enough to roll out again, about 10 minutes. (Note: this step may be repeated frequently, as the dough is very soft. If preferred, the dough can be rolled into a tube and cut into slices for baking, rather than cut using cookie cutters and rolled dough).
  4. Bake cookies until light golden brown, about 12 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through baking for even cooking. Carefully slide parchment paper with cookies onto racks to cool completely. Let baking sheets cool completely, then repeat process with remaining dough, lining sheets with fresh parchment between batches.
  5. While cookies are baking, combine powdered sugar and milk to make glaze. Once cookies are cooled, paint with glaze and let sit at room temp to dry. Wet glaze can be sprinkled with raw or decorating sugar, if desired.