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Sugar cookie dough

(Makes about 5 dozen)

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened slightly


1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 egg

2 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

Extra flour (for sprinkling)

1. In an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until creamy. Mix in the vanilla and almond extracts. Beat in the egg.

2. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture, beating on low speed until they are thoroughly combined.

3. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand. Turn the dough over several times until it is smooth. Cover the bowl and refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours or until firm.

4. Set the oven at 375 degrees. Have 2 ungreased baking sheets on hand. Divide the dough in half.

5. On a lightly floured counter, roll out one piece of dough until it is about 1/4-inch thick. Stamp out shapes. Place the cookies 2 inches apart on the ungreased sheets.

6. Bake the cookies for 7 to 8 minutes, or until they are golden at the edges. Cool slightly before decorating. Roll, stamp, and bake the remaining dough in the same way.

Adapted from "Betty Crocker'sCookie Book"

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