Make any occasion special with chocolate sugar cookies

Molly celebrated her 10th birthday recently, which seems to require numerous parties with a variety of guests at each event.

First, there is the friend birthday where cupcakes are shared with her closest comrades. Next is the family birthday where we have the best cake possible Ė made by a friend of mine. Then, there is the school celebration. After two cake parties, what was I going to send to school with Molly to share with her classmates?

We made Chocolate Sugar Cookies Ė a great alternative to cake, especially for larger parties. I made the dough one day while the kids were at school. Itís not hard to make, but needs a little chilling time, so I thought it best to have it ready when the kids got home so we could progress with this project.

Emma, 11, and Molly, 10, rolled the dough into a nice, smooth sheet about ľ-inch thick. Clay, 8, was the dough taste-tester, making sure it was good every step of the way. All of them chose a cookie cutter and had at it.

Itís hard not to get too controlling over this, when you see various cuts into the dough with large areas in between that are now useless. It is all I can do not to loose my cool over this ridiculous waste of delicious dough. Nonetheless, we were awarded with two trays of perfectly cut hearts, butterflies and stars.

This dough needs to be chilled for 15 minutes before baking. It was cold enough that sitting them on the deck was sufficient chilling at my house.

Once in the oven, they filled the house with such a wonderful aroma. After another rather lengthy cooling, they were ready to be decorated. Some royal icing is all that is needed, and we tried to keep it pretty simple. You probably know how difficult it is for kids to keep icing simple.

Anyway, the cookies looked great and were delicious. So, if you and your little ones need a culinary project fit for any celebration, try these chocolate sugar cookies that are sure to please every chocolate loverís palate. Margery Reed Poitras is a former professional chef who now cooks for her kids and occasionally for the more mature palate.