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Braided Sweetheart Cookies

 Braided Sweetheart Cookies
Everyone had a "hay day" when our daughter, Naomi, married Philip Shellenberg. Naomi's grandma, Lilly Person, who has made these tender cookies for 48 years, fixed them in the shape of hearts for the wedding. They got gobbled up in a "heartbeat".
24 ServingsPrep: 25 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 to 8 drops red food coloring

Directions

  • In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat
  • in egg and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt;
  • gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well.
  • Divide dough in half; tint one portion pink, leaving the remaining
  • portion white. Wrap each portion in plastic wrap; refrigerate for 4
  • hours or overnight.
  • For each cookie, shape a 1-in. ball of each color into an 8-in. rope.
  • Place a pink and white rope side-by-side; press together gently and
  • twist. Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets; shape into a
  • heart and pinch ends to seal.
  • Bake at 350° for 8-11 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.
  • Cool on wire racks. Yield: 2 dozen.

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Braided Sweetheart Cookies (continued)

Editor's Note: If cookies spread during baking, place the baking sheets with shape dough in the freezer for 10 minutes, then bake for 11-12 minutes. Tip: Fix cookies ahead and freeze until serving.
Nutritional Facts: 1 serving (1 each) equals 147 calories, 8 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 29 mg cholesterol, 138 mg sodium, 17 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 2 g protein.