Draw your own simple pumpkin template for cutting out dough shapes or use a 3-inch pumpkin cookie-cutter.
Courtesy of Jennifer Low
Jack O’Lantern Cookies
Pumpkin Patch Cookie Icing
Preheat oven to 375 F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Mix flour, baking soda and salt (tip for measuring flour: stir flour, spoon into measuring cup, then level). Set aside.
In bowl, using electric mixer, beat butter until fluffy. Gradually beat in sugars until mixture is no longer “scratchy” sounding against bowl. Beat in egg and vanilla. Gradually beat flour mixture into butter mixture.
Switch to working in flour mixture with hands when dough gets too stiff to beat. Knead into smooth dough. Form into disk, wrap in plastic, chill 15 minutes.
Cut out simple 3-inch pumpkin shape with stem (as shown in photo) from light cardboard to use as template or use a store-bought pumpkin cookie-cutter. Divide chilled dough into two pieces. Dust board and rolling pin with flour. Roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Trace pumpkin template with small sharp knife.
Re-roll dough scraps as required. Cut out 14 pumpkin shapes. Place at least 1 inch apart on baking sheets. The cookies will spread. Bake on middle rack of oven 12 minutes, or until golden.
After cookies are removed from oven but still warm, use a 1-inch cookie cutter (shape like a leaf, “O” or crescent) to cut opening for mouth of jack o-lantern. Cool cookies before decorating with Pumpkin Patch Cookie Icing (see recipe below). Spread icing over each cookie.
While icing is wet, stick on black candies for eyes and nose and green candies as stem (you may want to cut the soft candies into shapes first), if using. Icing will harden.
Sift icing sugar into bowl. Mix in milk and lemon juice until smooth, adjust thickness by adding spoons of icing sugar if too thin or drops milk if too thick. Stir in drops of red and yellow food colouring until bright orange colour is achieved.