I saw this recipe in the December issue of Bon Appetit, which always has a few holiday cookies. I’m not necessarily into holiday cookies but I’m always into salt and butter!
The ingredients list is awesomely simple and the batter is so good I considered eating it by the spoonful. The finished cookies are pretty good too.
Recipe from Bon Appetit, instructions modified by me.
1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, chilled and cut into pieces
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean
1 large eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1 tsp water
1 cup white sanding sugar (or sparkly decorative sugar, whatever big crystal you can find)
Using very cold butter, cut it into cubes. In a large bowl (or stand mixer) combine butter, granulated sugar and vanilla bean seeds. To get seeds out of vanilla pod cut the pod in half lengthwise then scrape the seeds into the bowl. Mix on high for about 5 minutes until it is very light and fluffy. Next scrape down sides and beat in one egg. On low gradually add 2 cups of flour. Pat dough into a disk about 1 inch thick. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill until firm, 1 – 2 hours.
Before preheating your oven, place your oven racks in the upper and lower third positions. Preheat to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to about ¼ inch thickness. Dust with more flour to prevent sticking. Using cookie cutters of our choice, make larger cut then smaller cut. Transfer cookie to lined baking sheet.
Gather scraps together and chill again for 5 minutes before rolling out.
Beat 1 egg with 1 tsp of water in a small bowl. Brush cookies with egg wash and sprinkle generously with decorative sugar. Freeze for 5 minutes then put straight into ready oven.
Bake for 10 – 15 minutes, rotate baking sheets from top rack to bottom rack halfway through. Bake until edges start to turn brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.