What I needed was a rolled cookie recipe that didn’t contain baking powder or baking soda. So I did what I should have done in the first place—went back to the Cookie Countess website and used their recipe. You can find it here:and, trust me, it’s the best rolled-cookie recipe I’ve ever used. And it doesn’t have to be chilled before rolling.
Don’t worry if you don’t own a stand mixer. It’s not needed unless you’re making industrial quantities. I usually just make half a batch, using a sturdy spoon and elbow grease, and it comes out fine, though I often need to add a tiny bit of milk to get the last of the flour in. I think that’s more to do with today’s butter, though, which seems hard and dry (I can leave it out overnight and it doesn’t get soft) compared to what I’m used to.
The dough handles amazingly well. It rolls easily, and can be made very thin (good for sandwich cookies). It also rerolls well, especially if you add a very small quantity of milk to the scraps first. Cookies do not lose their shape being transferred from the countertop to the pan, nor as they bake. No puffing up or distortion. And while the dough does require butter, there’s nothing in it that you can’t easily find at your local grocery store.
It’s been my experience that most rolled cookies really don’t have much flavour. These ones aren’t bad, with a taste and texture reminiscent of a good store-bought shortbread. And, of course, you’re going to ice them, which could add flavour. There’s also a chocolate version of this available on the Cookie Countess website which rolls just as well. I don’t think it’s chocolatey enough but too much cocoa would probably affect the handling, and not in a good way.
So you might be wondering if you can substitute in margarine, given the high cost of butter these days. I know I did! And I tried the experiment, but the dough didn’t handle nearly as well and was much more fragile. It would be okay if you were making very small cookies but anything larger is likely to tear or warp on being moved to the pan.
So now that I had my dough sorted, it was time to move on to the icing part.