Why is it that just because February has fewer days in the month it has to go by twice as fast? Those days have been ticking by at the Bacon house. I haven't forgot about my awesome readers here, just been side tracked with kid events. Also there is a big change happening at the Bacon house that involves bring home the bacon, and it's taking a lot of my time. But I will try to catch up on a few posts and update more routinely.
So lets start with backing up to your Valentines day? Did your sweetie get you something special? Even though it was our 10 year anniversary from the day Mr. Bacon asked me to spend forever with him (P.S. I said yes!) I believe once I started having kids Valentines day moved over to a kids holiday. I love planning some sweet and red surprises for them. So what did we do this year?
To start how about some pink heart pancakes? I used my mix recipe from here. Added pink food coloring and a bit of creative work pouring the batter on my griddle and the kids had the best breakfast to start their Valentines day.
(since we are taking about the day of love... this griddle was my first Christmas present from Mr. Bacon.... Nothing says romance better than a griddle for your girlfriend. I'm happy to say the griddle and the two of us are still working out!)
Lunch was the traditional heart shaped PB&J sandwiches. I wonder if the Bacon kids will get bored of heart sandwiches when they are teenagers? .... And what do you make your sweethearts for dinner? Why.. Heart shaped homemade pizza of course! One pepperoni for the kids, one pepperoni, sausage, & mushroom or Mr. Bacon and me. Everyone loved it so much I'm happy to report we didn't have leftovers!
Now you know Ma Bacon better than to just leave the day as that... So in the afternoon I baked up my other treat for the kids. I've been waiting for a while to put this recipe on here. It's a household favorite and it's highly requested by everyone who eats them. These are THE BEST sugar cookies I've found!
Ma Bacon's Sugar Cookies
1 cup butter softened (the real thing makes these amazing, but margarine works too)
1 cup sugar
2.5 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 Tbsp Orange Juice
1 tsp vanilla (or almond- my favorite) extract
In mixing bowl place butter and sugar and mix together. Add in egg and mix. Add in baking powder and flour next, the dough will be thick. Next add in the extract and orange juice (this is the magic secret ingredient!). Mix all together. Now it's time to make cookies!
Get your work area ready. I use my good ol' cutting board for rolling out cookies. It saves my counter top some wear and tear. Place about 1/4 cup of flour on the board and spread some of it out to work into the dough. Take 1/2 the dough and roll it into a large ball. Then kneed it a few times in the flour on your work surface. Roll out your dough, keeping it thicker will help makes these cookies remain soft after baking. You can see how thick they are in the picture below. I roll my dough between 1/4-1/2 inch thick!
One big tip on rolling out the dough, is to only roll it out 3 times, then set it aside. (check out my scrap pile on the cutting board above.) Once you've rolled all the dough out 3 times and cut out your cookies, then you can roll the scrap pile out and cut cookies out of it. This also helps keeps the cookies super soft.
Once you get a pan full, they are ready for the oven. Bake 375* for 7-9 minutes. With sugar cookies you want to make sure they are not all brown like other cookies. You just want them baked though. the bottoms will be slightly brown but until you take them off the pan you won't be able to see this. I have to say finding the exact baking time is a bit of trial and error but it 's worth it when they melt in your mouth! Let them rest on the pan for no more than a minute and then remove them to a cooling rack. If you leave them on the pan they will continue to cook and become hard.
Ma Bacon's Sugar Cookie Icing:
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tbsp butter softened
1 tsp vanilla or almond extract
2 tbsp milk
Mix all together. Add more or less milk to make icing spreadable. If it's too runny, add more powdered sugar.
The pink frosting on these cookies is from the recipe above. I took half the batch and let the kids decorate them how they'd like with the sprinkles... they were gone too fast to for me to get a picture of them! But decorating is their favorite part about these cookies besides eating them! As for the white frosting I used the butter cream recipe here (half batch)and put it in my decorator bags and got creative!
YUMMY! Thick delicious better than any store bought sugar cookies!
Even though Valentines day has come and gone... you can still show some love with a 'hearts' day or just because I love you day. How about some shamrock pancakes, pizza and cookies tinted green for St. Patrick's day? Heck these cookies don't need a special occasion to make! But I'll warn you - they don't last long! (hint you can put some unfrosted one's in the freezer for a later treat if you'd like. I actually like eating these just as much unfrosted too!)
Hope you enjoyed these- And Happy Belated Valentines day from the Bacon Family!