Basic recipe for the gourmet bakery tray cookies you see wrapped in colored cellophane in bakeries at holiday time
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Cream softened butter.
- Mix in sugar thoroughly.
- Beat in egg yolk, and extracts until light and fluffy.
- Stir in flour by hand, 1 cup at a time, making a soft dough.
- Press cookies out following directions for your cookie press.
- Suggestions are "Fingers", "S-swirls", "Stars", and "Shells".
- Bake 8-10 minutes (depending on size) at 350°.
- Let cool completely on a rack.
- Optional: Melt 8 squares of semisweet chocolate over hot (not boiling) water.
- When melted, remove from flame but leave it over the hot water.
- Dip each cookie in hot chocolate, resting it on a long tined fork.
- It can be half dipped or bottom dipped or however you choose.
- Let set upside down on rack or waxed paper.
- It helps set the chocolate if you place the dipped cookies in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.
- The chocolate should remain solid at room temperature, but a hot summer day could make it soft enough to give anyone sticky fingers.
- In that case store in the refrigerator.
- While chocolate is still warm you can dip the edge in coconut or ice cream sprinkles (jimmies) The finger shapes can also be spread with raspberry or apricot Jam and sandwiched together.
- This produces the fancy cookies seen on Bakery trays.
- Notes: The dough can also be chilled for several hours and then rolled out to make cut out cookies.
- For a different flavor leave out the almond extract and substitute 2 teaspoons of orange or lemon extract.