This week I made Red White & Blue Star cookies, from the July ’08 edition of Living. This week is the last week of Martha’s cookies from my Living 2008 back issues. Overall, they’ve been OK, some I’m never making again (the chocolate-coconut cheesecake squares spring to mind).
As usual, I strayed a bit and made a few modifications of my own: Halloween is on Saturday, so I used a pumpkin shaped cookie cutter; instead of heavy cream, I used Half & Half; I didn’t have casting sugar (still), so I used raw brown sugar instead. I also only used raspberry jam (we have two open jars in the fridge, I’m not sure why).
Oliver oversaw the rolling out process, he sat in the corner next to the stand mixer, and then tried to get into the raspberry jam. He was more intrigued by the sticky texture than the sweet flavor.
I had a few problems cutting out the pumpkin shapes, the layers were shifty on the jam, and I ended up with a fair bit of dough leftover (stars may have yielded more, I’m not sure). The jam is layered between the dough, you can’t re-roll it out, so I opted to bake the leftovers too. Step 5 suggests “If desired, bake dough scraps” – no kidding, there were quite a few.
The cookies are good (I sampled some of the baked scraps – the sugar adds an excellent crunch), but I’m not sure they’re worth the effort. For fussy sugar cookies, I much prefer the Maple Leaf Cookies (and now that I have sugar to top them with, I’m sure they’ll be better next time).
Martha Stewart Living, July 2008
- 5 cups cake flour (not self-rising), plus more for surface
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 12 ounces (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
- 4 large egg yolks
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream, plus more for brushing
- 3/4 cup raspberry jam
- 3/4 cup blueberry jam
- 2 tablespoons sanding sugar
- Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Cream butter and granulated sugar, with a mixer on medium speed, until pale and fluffy. Beat in yolks and vanilla until well combined. Add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with cream and beating well after each addition. Shape dough into 4 disks, wrap each in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (or up to 3 days).
- On floured parchment, roll 1 disk of dough into a 1/8-inch-thick rectangle. Repeat with remaining disks. Stack sheets of dough and parchment, and refrigerate for 1 hour or freeze for 30 minutes.
- Spread raspberry jam on 1 sheet of dough, blueberry jam on another. Top each with a plain sheet of dough. Refrigerate for 1 hour or freeze for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut out cookies using a 2 1/2-inch star-shaped cutter, and space 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets. Brush with cream, and sprinkle with sanding sugar. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or freeze for 15 minutes.
- Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until golden, 16 to 20 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire racks, and let cool completely. If desired, bake dough scraps.