This dough is the perfect starting place for almost endless creative cookie possibilities. One idea: Cut it into the shape of letters to make festive sayings, then, before putting the cookies on the baking sheets, sprinkle with colored sugars and poke a hole through each cookie with a drinking straw. That way, you can lace some ribbon through the cookies and hang them up when they're all done!
Yields: 4 to 6 dozen cookies
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter (see Note)
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
In a large bowl, beat the butter, sugar, egg, vanilla, and salt. Gradually add the flour; beat until well combined. Refrigerate the dough for 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Separate the dough into 4 pieces, then roll out each piece on a lightly floured surface to a 1/4-inch thickness. Cut or mold the dough into desired shapes. Place the shapes on ungreased cookie sheets and bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until light brown.
NOTE: It's best not to substitute margarine for butter in this recipe. The size of the cookie cutters you use will determine the yield. (That's why there's such a wide range given on the yield!)