Sugar Cookies – Small Batch Recipe

When I was a kid, my favorite Chinese restaurant offered almond cookies for dessert and I almost never ordered my main meal without including those cookies.  This recipe is for a basic sugar cookie but it lends itself well to variations.  I made one batch substituting almond extract for the vanilla and they came out just like the almond cookies I had as a kid.  And I love that this recipe only yields about six crispy-on-the-outside, chewy-on-the-inside cookies,  just the right amount to enjoy as is, or to try different variations without being buried in cookie dough.  I can have a few with my morning coffee and still have some left over to share with a friend or to nibble on later while I’m watching back to back episodes of my favorite home design shows.

4 tablespoons salted butter
1 large egg yolk
1/3 cup and 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup and 2 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

baking sheet
parchment paper
medium (3-quart) mixing bowl
small plate
mixing spoon

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Melt butter in microwave or in a small pot over low heat. Allow it to cool slightly and then mix in 1/3 cup sugar, egg, and vanilla extract.
3. Mix in flour and baking soda, a little at a time until batter forms into a ball, then cut the ball in half.  Separate each half into three balls of equal size.
4. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons sugar onto a plate, roll each ball in sugar, and then place at least 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.
5. Bake 10 minutes until cracks form on top of cookie. Cookies will be light in color. Do NOT overbake.
6. Allow them to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove them to a cooling rack.

• If dough is too sticky to roll into balls, pop the bowl into the fridge for about a half hour, then try again. If dough is too dry, add a little bit of milk, 1/2 teaspoon at a time until dough is pliable enough to form into balls.
• Cookies will appear puffed and rounded when first removed from the oven but will flatten as they cool.

20 minutes

6 cookies

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