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Cut-Out Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 cups confectioners' sugar or glazing sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia or 1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten with 2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon baker's ammonia
3 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, cream together the butter, confectioners'
sugar and corn syrup until light and fluffy. Beat in the flavoring
and salt. Add the baker's ammonia to the egg and water, and stir
to dissolve. Add this mixture, along with the flour, to the
ingredients in the bowl, and beat until smooth.

Divide dough in half, cover or wrap it, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Preheat your oven to 350F.

Take one piece of dough out of the refrigerator, and flour your
work surface and the dough. Roll it out very thinly (about 1/16-inch
thick), using flour to keep the dough from sticking to the table
or rolling pin. Cut out shapes, transfer to ungreased cookie sheets,
and bake just until slightly brown on the edges, or until they feel
firm, about 8 to 10 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the baking
sheet for several minutes, or until they're set. Transfer them to
a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies may be frosted after baking,
or sprinkled with sugar before baking.

Yield: about 4 dozen 2-inch cookies.


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