Cutting edge: Use a wire cheese slicer dipped in flour to cut uniform-size cooies from refrigerated dough.
Shaping up: Dampen your hands. It makes it easier to shaped cookies.
Here is a timesaver that eliminates the need to chill dough: Place dough between two pieces of waxed paper cut to cookie sheet sixe.
Roll out ⅛" thickness. Lift off top sheet, cut out cookies as close together as possible. Then put dough in the freezer 5-10 minutes. When it's firm, cutouts can be easily lifted off with a spatula, & they won't lose their shape. Reroll excess dough & repeat.
Make square cookies with a pizza cutter & save time. Less handling means they'll be less tough.
If you want perfectly round drop cookies, bake them in a muffin tin.
But grease the tim well. You'll never get a spatula under these cookies. You may have made up extra cookie dough to keep on hand. But if you have time when you're making the first batch, you can take the process one step further. Drop the extra dough by tsp. on a cookie sheet. Pop them into the freezer & bag them when they;re frozen. Then when the mood strikes you, you can bake cookies with hardly any effort.
When you;re making up a big batch of plain cookie dough, put some in small zip closing plastic bags with a few drops of food coloring. You can blend the color in with no mess, & you'll have pink dough for Valentine's Day & green for St. Patrick's Day ready to go.
Place cookie sheet in middle of rack. It shouldn't touch sides of oven or baking won't be even.
Use a light or shiny sheet. Dark ones may make cookies too brown.
If fresh baked cookies won't slip off the sheet without crumbling, just warm the sheet over a burner or put it back in the oven for a minute before trying again.
Around any holiday, if special cutters are needed, take the serrated edge from a discarded food wrap box & it can be bent into any shape & works very well. Tape ends together with cellophane tape.
Make all cookie dough in one day, using the same bowl. Start with light colored cookies & end with dark. Wrap each batch separately, tag it with the name of the cookie & baking time & temperature, then freeze it until "Bake Off" time. There will be only one kind of clean up each day.
If you want to keep everyone away from cookies then wrap in brown paper & lable "Liver" on the package.
As a gift, make several kinds of frozen cookie dough & deliver cartons along with a recipe card & baking instructions to people who work outside the home. They can have "home made" cookies anytime.
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