When we were young, my mother always made special Valentine cookies for us and our friends. They were large, soft hearts, covered in poppy red frosting, inscribed with our names in cursive white frosting, and the edges adorned in coconut flakes.
My parent’s kitchen is nearing the last of the remodeling, unpacking and organizing their life in a kitchen that they haven’t seen for the past 6 months. I knew it was a long shot, but I called my mother anyways to see if she could find the famous Valentine Cookie recipe. This morning we received a sad message during preschool, that she could not find it. (not to worry mom). Here is an adapted version of a recipe I found to use in preschool. For a gluten-free version, check out our snowman cookie recipe.
Valentine is a beautiful story about a child disappointed on Valentine’s Day because she is without her mother. She and her Grandmother bake sugar cookies together, and care for a newborn lamb. Soon, she finds that someone else needs her and as her mother returns, shares a special Valentine cookie with her mother that she loves so much. In the story, they use cookie cutters that remind them of the animals on the Grandmother’s farm. This was great for us because we have lots of farm animals in our neighborhood and the ‘petting zoo’ at the end of the street. Oh, and an abundance of animal cookie cutters from the ‘after Easter sale’ years ago with Janelle.
After preschool we finished baking the leftover dough. I had frosted some of the cookies and the builder confiscated them to put into the play kitchen. When the designer came home later, the builder offered him a cookie from the play microwave. The designer asked if there was any frosting. The builder opened the play oven and gave him a frosted cookie from his stash. They weren’t nearly as beautiful as the ones Mom makes, but we still made memories.
1 c butter, softened
1 c sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 c white flour
1 1/4 c whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
3 c powdered sugar
6 tbs butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
4 tbs almond milk (the secret to an extra wonderful flavor)
Food coloring, if desired
- In a large bowl, combine butter and sugar; cream together until mixture appears light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla; beat until thoroughly mixed. Add flour, baking powder and salt; stir to mix.
- Press dough into a ball, cover and refrigerate until chilled, 1 to 2 hours. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Baking sheets may be un-greased.
- On a lightly floured surface, and using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough to a thickness of about 1/4 inch.
- Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until cookies are set and the edges are very lightly browned or just beginning to brown. Remove cookies from the oven and let cool on the baking sheets 2 to 3 minutes. When they seem firm enough, move the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
In a medium bowl, combine powdered sugar, butter, vanilla, and almond milk. Add food coloring if desired.
Frost cooled cookies and set aside until frosting is set.