Source: Adapted from Recipe Girl
Makes: 2 dozen cookies*
Wow, I’m pretty sure I could have eaten a dozen of these in a row. I stopped at five, but I also ate several spoonfuls of the glaze. Because I am powerless against sugar.
These smell amazing while they’re cooking, like actual cinnamon buns. When cooked, they have a classic buttery sugar cookie flavor, but the cinnamon sugar swirl is caramelized and wonderfully crunchy-chewy. Terwilliger thought they tasted like Christmas sugar cookies. I thought they tasted like little slivers of cinnamon butter heaven.
I took one (only one… sigh) to work the next day, and it was amazing. These cookies are really satisfyingly crunchy. So, so good. And, bonus!, you can make the dough ahead of time and leave it in your freezer so that you can slice and bake at will. Go to it, guys.
But first, I will warn you that rolling out the dough and shaping it into a rectangle was kind of a pain in the ass. But it was a fleeting pain in the ass, because it didn’t really take that long, and the end result was completely worth it. I will definitely be making these again.
For the cookie dough:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 & 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1 & 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 & 1/2 cups flour
For the cinnamon filling:
1 large egg white
1 T. water
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 & 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
For the glaze:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 T. half & half or milk
Make the dough: In a large bowl beat together powdered sugar and butter until smooth. Beat in salt and vanilla extract. Stir in flour. Gather mixture into a ball then flatten into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least an hour. (Dough keeps in fridge for at least five days, I discovered.)
After it’s chilled, roll out sugar cookie dough onto a lightly floured surface. (I used floured wax paper.) Roll dough into a 9 x 12-inch rectangle. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg white and water until foamy. In another small bowl, mix together cinnamon and sugar. Brush egg white onto dough and sprinkle liberally and evenly with cinnamon-sugar mixture.
Now comes the tricky part: Starting with the long edge, roll dough tightly into a log. Use the wax paper to coax the dough into a long roll. Once fully rolled, wrap the log in wax paper or plastic wrap and freeze for one hour, or until firm. (Dough will keep in freezer for up to two months.)
To bake the cookies: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper (or just lightly grease them). Unwrap the dough log. Using a sharp knife, cut the cookies into 1/2-inch slices. Lay flat on cookie sheets and bake for 12 – 15 minutes, or until the cookies are a light golden brown. Transfer to racks to cool.
Make the frosting: Sift the powdered sugar into a small bowl. Add half & half and stir until smooth. Drizzle icing onto cooled cookies.
*1/2-inch slices should yield 2 dozen cookies. I sliced mine a little thinner and ended up with closer to 3.5 dozen.