Allsorts Sugar Cookies

Yield: I lost count. At least 12 dozen. Probably more.

Source: Adapted from the SprinkleBakes cookbook

Prep 1 hour, about 4 hours total with chilling

Vanilla dough

1 cup (1/2 lb) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup/ 200g granulated sugar

1 egg

1 tsp./ 5g vanilla extract or a few drops of anise oil/flavoring

3 cups/ 420g  bread flour

Pinch of salt

Green liquid food color

Pink liquid food color

Yellow liquid food color

White liquid food color

Corn syrup

Multicolor or blue nonpareils

  1. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter and sugar together until just incorporated.
  2. Add the egg and vanilla extract (or anise oil). Mix again on low speed, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl intermittently as needed.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the bread flour and salt.  Add to the butter and egg mixture.  Mix on low speed until a dough is formed and there are no longer any streaks of butter in the mixing bowl. The dough will clump around the paddle attachment while being mixed. If your mixture does not come together and is crumbly, add ice cold water 1 tbsp. at a time until the dough clumps. Divide and tint dough with a few drops of food color into the following colors - green, pink, yellow. If using the white food color, place a 10 oz. portion of dough (about 1 cup) into the mixing bowl with 2 tablespoons of the white color. Mix well; add additional bread flour 1 tablespoon at a time until dough is stiff and not sticky. You may choose to leave the white portion untinted if desired. 
  4. Turn out each dough onto a sheet of wax paper and top with a second sheet.  Roll dough into an oblong disc between the papers with a rolling pin.  Transfer dough - wax paper and all - to a large cookie sheet.  Wrap the dough tightly onto the cookie sheet with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  5. Make the chocolate dough variation. Repeat recipe all ingredients, except replace 1 cup all-purpose flour with 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder. Omit dividing/tinting instructions. Continue with rolling/chilling instructions as before.
  6. Remove top sheet of wax paper from the chilled dough(s) and roll each dough a little thinner.  It should not be sticky. Roll dough to approximately ¼-inch thickness. 
  7. To stack dough into Allsorts colors, cut a strait edge on one of the tinted doughs (green, yellow, pink). Cut a 3-inch wide long strip of chocolate dough, place on top of the tinted dough with the strait edges lining up evenly. Top with a same-size length of white (or plain) dough (see picture below). Trim away excess tinted dough and place stacked strip on a parchment or Silpat-lined baking sheet. Repeat stacking with remaining dough colors. We'll be freezing these, so make room in your freezer for a cookie sheet or two.
  8. To make the round Allsorts, take a scrap piece of chocolate dough and roll into a long rope. Place onto a piece of pink dough that has been rolled to 1/4-inch thickness. Roll pink dough around chocolate rope. Trim away excess pink dough. Place roll on the lined baking sheet with the other stacks of dough. 
  9. For the nonpareil covered Allsorts, make a long rope of any leftover dough and cut into round buttons. Place these on a baking sheet. Place all dough stacks, rounds and buttons on the cookie sheet(s) in the freezer for 30 minutes or until very firm. When dough is chilled, cut stacks with a sharp non-serrated knife into 1x1/2-inch pieces with a thickness of 1/4-inch. This doesn't have to be perfect, and you can make cookies bigger or smaller to your liking -  have fun with it! Cut the pink roll into coins 1/4 to 1/2-inch thickness.
  10. Freeze the cut pieces for 30 minutes. This will help the cookies maintain a crisp shape during baking.
  11. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  12. Bake the cookies for about 8 minutes. Do not overcook, they should stay pale to keep their vibrant colors.
  13. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack. Roll plain buttons in corn syrup and then in nonpareils. Allow nonpareil-covered cookies to dry/set for 30 minutes.
  14. Package cookies in cellophane goodie bags or other clear packaging.