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Vanilla Wafers

Vanilla Wafers
Once these logs of vanilla dough have been chilled, they can be quickly and easily sliced into perfectly shaped thin, round wafers. You can also tightly wrap the logs and freeze them for up to 2 months, then thaw them, still wrapped, in the refrigerator overnight, and slice and bake them the next morning. Crystal sugar, toasted nuts or chocolate chips can be pressed onto the tops of the cookies before they are baked. Serve these classic wafers with your favorite ice cream.

Ingredients:

  • 16 Tbs. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room
      temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 Tbs. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

Directions:

To make the dough by hand, in a large bowl, combine the butter, sugar and salt. Beat with a wooden spoon until smooth. Add the egg yolks and vanilla and stir until blended. Add the flour and mix until incorporated and a smooth dough forms.

To make the dough with an electric mixer, in the mixer bowl, combine the butter, sugar and salt. Beat on medium speed until smooth. Reduce the speed to low, add the egg yolks and vanilla and beat until blended. Add the flour and beat until incorporated and a smooth dough forms.

Divide the dough into 4 equal portions. Roll out each portion into a log 7 inches long and about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Wrap the logs in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours.

Preheat an oven to 350°F. Line 3 rimless baking sheets with parchment paper.

Using a sharp knife, cut each unwrapped log crosswise into slices 1/4 inch thick. Place the cookies 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets.

Bake the cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until the edges and bottoms are golden, 12 to 15 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer them to wire racks and let cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days. Makes about 65 cookies.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma, Essentials of Baking, by Cathy Burgett, Elinor Klivans & Lou Seibert Pappas (Oxmoor House, 2003).