A Modern Twist on Traditional German Sugar Cookies (Zuckersternchen)

Let’s face it, delicious treats are the real reason we look forward to the holiday season. So, what better way to get into the spirit than with a recipe for sugar cookies? It’s short, simple and undeniably sweet! Adapted from a 1960s German cookbook titled Backen Macht Freude; this recipe defines tradition. If you don’t consider yourself a baker extraordinaire, never fear. The steps are easy to follow and chances are you already have most of the ingredients in your cupboard. Give it a whirl!

Disclaimer: The temptation to test taste some (all) of the dough will be difficult to resist!

The Original Recipe: Zuckersternchen

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Don’t worry if German isn’t your first (or second) language. We’ve translated the ingredients and steps for these sugar cookies!

Simple is better with less than 10 ingredients.

german_sugar_cookies_ingredients

Makes 18 cookies.

  • 250 grams of flour
  • 2 level teaspoons of baking powder
  • 100 grams of sugar
  • 1 packet Dr. Oetker Vanilla Sugar (can also be substituted with 1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract)
  • pinch of salt
  • 5 drops of pure lemon extract (less than 1/2 teaspoon)
  • 1 egg
  • 120 grams of cold butter or margarine

Icing:

  • 125 grams of icing sugar
  • 2-3 teaspoons warm water
  • rainbow sprinkles for a pop of colour!

Getting Started:

Sift flour and baking powder together. Make a hole in the centre of dry ingredients and add sugar, egg, vanilla sugar (or vanilla extract), salt and lemon extract.

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With a spatula, stir ingredients together until a crumble forms.

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Cut cold butter into chunks and add to mixture with a pastry cutter (or a potato masher will do the trick!). Knead dough with hands to ensure butter is fully combined and roll into a ball. Cover and refrigerate for one hour.

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Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Once the dough is chilled and firm, roll out to a thickness of a 1/4 inch. Use cookie cutters to cut into various shapes.

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Place on cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes on the middle rack. Allow to cool for at least one hour.

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Ice and add sprinkles for a bit of fun and a pop of colour.

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Two sugar cookies, please. 

Two is better than one, after all – and we’re betting you won’t be able to resist. These cookies are appealing to the eye and the tastebuds! The icing compliments the crunchy texture of the cookie and adds a little extra moisture. If you want to try out this recipe, we’d love to hear what you think. Who knows, these sugar cookies might even become your new fave this season! Until then, let us know:

What is your favourite holiday treat?

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