I'm not a big fan of Valentine's Day because it is such a Hallmark holiday, so Mr. Tall and I don't really celebrate it. But it sure is a good excuse for me to bake!
I made these heart-shaped Glazed Butter Cookies--they were super easy and fun to make!
Butter Cookie Dough (Cook's Illustrated, Holiday Baking 2007)
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup superfine sugar (or granulated sugar put in the food processor for about 20 seconds)
1/4 teaspoon table salt
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces, room temperature
2 tablespoons cream cheese, room temperature
In bowl of standing mixer, combine flour, sugar, and salt on low speed, and add butter 1 piece at a time with the mixer still running on low until mixture looks crumbly. Add vanilla and cream cream, and mix until dough just begins to form large clumps. Knead dough in the bowl to form a mass, then turn out onto counter top, divide in half, form into two 4-inch disks, wrap, and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes (or up to 3 days).
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Roll out 1 dough disk to 1/8-inch thickness between 2 large pieces of parchment paper and cut into desired shapes using cookie cutter. (Cook's Illustrated suggests that you refrigerate the dough after it's rolled out and before it's cut out, but I didn't and it still baked up fine.) Bake until light golden brown, about 10-12 minutes, and cool on wire rack.
1 tablespoon cream cheese, room temperature
3 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
Whisk cream cheese and milk until combined and no lumps remain. Wish in confectioners' sugar until smooth. Drizzle or spread glaze on cooled cookies.
I sprinkled rainbow baking sugar on the cut out dough before baking the cookies that I didn't plan on glazing--a colorful and festive option if you don't like the glaze. Although I like this glaze recipe because it's creamier and less sugary than most recipes, so it's worth trying the cookies with the glaze.
Happy Valentine's Day--however you spend it!