First, Happy Valentines Day!
Second, I have accomplished my goal of the sugar cookie quest (almost – not quite cookie cutter perfect but close enough) – you should most definitely make these slice and bake cookies. They are the most adorable thing ever. Even if some of the hearts look a little blob-ish. In this case for me, it is the thought and effort put into these little guys that count. Not to mention now I never need to buy the store bought ones again. (Not that I ever have in over 8 years.. but I always wanted my sugar cookies to have a little flair!)
Think of the possibilities of what you can put in this little sugar cookie!! You want colored dough on the outside?!? Go for it. You want to make them for every holiday that you can Google? Do it… I may just because I can now.
Now that I have the technique down, the fun I can have with making these little guys is endless.
The endlessness of the cookie possibilities is astounding. Much like the endless possibilities of using suicide prevention techniques (yes, I am getting incredible at these segues). That is what I have been up to these past weeks.. Learning about suicide prevention and going to trainings to become certified to prevent suicide in those that are having active suicidal thoughts and behaviors.
I did it through an amazing organization that works in all types of trainings for suicide prevention for all types of people. You should look into one of them if you are at all interested.
I heard a recent statistic that said that people who receives some type of suicide prevention training, feel more competent when helping someone who is struggling with suicidal thoughts. That increased feeling of competence is proven to get the person in need to resources that will help them. This may sound rather like.. umm duh. But the coolest thing about this point is that you don’t have to be the person who is taking all of the responsibility for the person’s life. All you have to do is learn to ask the question “are you feeling suicidal?” however you want and then be the bridge to resources. Those resources could be 911, a crisis hotline, or even an emergency room.
The best thing you can do is ask and then redirect to someone that can really help. The pressure to keep watch over the person or be with them through the entire crisis can now be relieved.
I hope you have a lovely Valentine’s Day. If you are at all interested in any of the trainings that are in the link above. Do the quick Google search and see the options around you.
Oh and make these cookies. You will be greatly rewarded for your effort (fortune cookie sounding?).
Valentine (or anytime) Slice and Bake Cookies
Inspired by: Lauren’s latest
3 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
2 sticks butter
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
a few dabs of red gel food coloring
extra sugar for dusting
In a small bowl stir flour, baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
Cream butter and sugar together. Stir in egg and vanilla. Slowly incorporate dry ingredients. Once dough has come together, remove 2/3 of it to a separate bowl. Stir in the red food coloring to the remaining 1/3 of the dough until uniform in color.
Roll red dough out into a 1 inch slab. Cut out heart shapes and stack them together. Chill to harden to prevent smooshing (yep that is a technical baking word) of the cut out shape.
Roll remaining regular colored dough out and cover each row of stacked hearts being careful to keep them together. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 1 hour to overnight.
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat and set aside. Remove cookie dough logs from fridge and slice into 1/2 inch rounds. Spring top of cookie with sugar. Place onto prepared baking sheet leaving 1 inch around each cookie. Bake 10-12 minutes or until cookie is barely golden brown on the bottom and isn’t shiny. Remove from oven and cool 2 minutes before cooling completely on wire rack.