This special vanilla dough handles like modeling clay, but it also makes delicious cookies. Use this activity to strengthen your child's alphabet skills, to make place cards for children's birthday parties, or just to make a delicious treat.
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4 1/2 cups unsifted all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups butter
3 hard-boiled egg yolks
3/4 cup sugar
3 raw egg yolks
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Colored sugar or chocolate chips (optional)
Preheat your oven to 300°F.
Measure the flour into a large bowl.
Cut the butter into small pieces and add them to the flour. Have your child mix the flour and butter with his hands until the mixture forms fine crumbs.
In a separate bowl, mash the hard-boiled egg yolks with the sugar. Stir this mixture into the flour mixture.
In a separate bowl, blend the raw egg yolks with the vanilla. Stir this mixture into the flour mixture with a fork.
Have your child press the mixture into a firm ball. Cover and refrigerate it if you plan to shape and bake it later. Otherwise, work with it at room temperature.
Roll out the dough. Cut 3- or-4-inch strips and have your child roll them with his hands to make ropes.
Shape the ropes into the letters of your child's name. Flatten them slightly so they're about 1/4 inch thick. If you like, decorate them with colored sugar or chocolate chips.
Bake the letters on a baking sheet for 25–30 minutes.
Remove from the oven when cookies are just starting to brown on the bottom.
Cool cookies on the baking sheet for 2-3 minutes, then remove to a rack.
Be sure to let the cookies cool completely before allowing your child to handle them.
Adult participation required for baking. Be sure to keep your child away from the oven and hot baking sheet.