Homemade Valentine's Cookies

Making Valentine's Day Cookies can be more fun than making Christmas cookies.  The production is basically the same but with much, much less stress!!  Valentine's Day is usually more carefree.  Normally there isn't all the decorating, shopping, cooking and entertaining like at Christmastime.  So, relax and simply enjoy the fun!  Pick a day when the kids are home on a snow day or bake the cookies while the kids are at school and you have time to yourself...whichever one makes you the most happy!  They'll get eaten either way. :)

I always use the tried and true Betty Crocker's Cookbook "Traditional Sugar Cookies" Recipe

3/4 cup shortening (part butter or margarine, softened)
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla or 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract (I always use vanilla)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour*
1 teaspoon baking powder 
1 teaspoon salt

Mix thoroughly shortening, sugar, eggs and flavoring.  Blend in flour, baking powder and salt.  Cover;
chill at least l hour.

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Roll dough 1/8 inch thick on lightly floured cloth-covered
board.  Cut into desired shapes.  Place on ungreased baking sheet.  Bake 6 to 8 minutes
or until very light brown.


*If using self-rising flour, omit baking powder and salt.

After you have baked the cookies, you'll have to cool them on a cooling rack before frosting them.  For the chocolate frosting, I purchased pre-made frosting in a tub.  I've forgotten which brand.  Any of your favorites will do.  For the white frosting, I used my mom's old recipe.  It's not scientific or precise but, here goes.  Take a box of confectioner's sugar (16 ozs.?) and place it in a bowl, drop a dollup of shortening (my guess is it's between 1/4 and 1/2 cup), a teaspoon of vanilla and add enough milk until it makes the right consistency for nicely frosting the cookies.  

Next you can divide the white frosting into little bowls and add food coloring to make different colored frosting.  I chose to simply make pink.  Red would be pretty too.

 Frost the heart-shaped cookies as you wish.

Add sprinkles, sugars and nonpareils

Fun, fun,fun!!!

Be as creative as you'd like.  The cookies will be delicious!

Why not make a batch, put them in a decorated box and give some to a friend?

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