2/3 cup shortening
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup Nutella
2 1/2 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar, sifted
To Make Nutella Spiced Sugar Cookies:
In a medium bowl, cream the butter, shortening, and sugar with a hand mixer on high speed for two minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat for one minute.
Stir in the remaining dry ingredients on low speed just until combined. Divide the dough in half, and flatten each piece slightly (about 1-inch thickness), cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 C). Roll out each piece on was paper to 1/8-inch thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut out desired shapes-bats, pumpkins, headstones and bake on a cookie sheet for 10 minutes. Cool Completely.
To Make the Glaze:
Heat the Nutella, milk and confectioner's sugar in a small pot over low heat until combined and slightly warm. Spread each cookie with the glaze and decorate as desired with jimmies, sprinkles, mini chips, or Halloween candy. Allow them to set on a wire rack. Store in an airtight container.
Makes 24 cookies
These cookies can be baked ahead of time and frozen, unglazed, if stored airtight, for up to 6 weeks.
Date: October 8, 2003