I’ve waited for the longest time to have my lil guy, one day, join me in the kitchen and make lots of goodies. My son is now a couple months over 2 years and its the perfect time to start involving him and introduce him to cooking and even more fun – baking. We decided to get into the whole cookie making experience, which would actually be even a first for me. I’ve never ventured into making cookies and eversince Christmas I’ve been thinking Gingerbread Men, simple vanilla cookies, melt in your mouths, the chocolate variety and sugar coated ones. Of course, we don’t eat a huge amount of sugary foods but I find that in comparison to a chocolate bar or bag of sweets, when treats are made at home the child is really able to enjoy the entire experience and hold onto it for longer. Part of the slow food movement shall we say ! Being new to this game of cooking sweets for children though, I always do a little bit of food health research before stepping into the kitchen. I just look up ‘health consultants in the UK’ to get some better quality sites as, the internet does seem to be filled with many, many untrusted sites these days. Anyway, we did make our gingerbread men, which didn’t survive long enough to take pictures of … but since I learnt that cookie making is actually so simple, I couldn’t stop of thinking of trying my hand at some more. And just then as if God was listening to me, the Donna Hay issue arrived in my mail, loaded with cookie recipes ! I encourage you to try out these simple yet devastatingly divine cookies. And before you know it, you’ll finish them and find yourself baking a new batch …. just like me .
(Adapted from Donna Hay Christmas issue 2011)
125 gms softened unsalted butter
110gms caster sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
225gms plain flour – sifted
1 tablespoon dutch cocoa – sifted
A pinch of salt
Place the butter and sugar in an elecrtic mixer and beat for 8 mins or until fluffy pale and creamy. Add the egg and vanilla essence and further beat for 2 mins or until combined. Add the flour little by little and beat till a soft dough forms. Remove 2/3rds of the dough and set aside. Add the cocoa poedwer to the remaining dough and beat until well combined..
Roll ech dough portion out between 2 sheets of greaseproff paper to 3mm thick and refregerate for 30 mins or until firsm.
Preheat the oven to 160C . Using a 7 cm round cookie cutter , cut 8 rounds from the vanilla dough and using a 4 cm star cutter cut out stars and place them on top of the vanilla rounds. Place the cookies on a non stick silicon mat and bake for 12-13 mins or until lightly golden.
You can use the left over cookie dough to make smaller cookie of different shapes and bake all the smaller one together for about 8 mins.
Cool on wire wrach and store in an air tight container.