Vanilla Bean Orange Zest Cookies!

I absolutely love baking…if you couldn’t tell. I recently baked about 200 cookies for the external offices to show our office’s support for their efforts in making our company run so smoothly! I am now officially obsessed with this cookie. I knew I didn’t want to bake a simple sugar cookie…because what fun would that be? So I added a little pizzazz!

Vanilla Bean/ Orange Zest Cookies

 3 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 cup butter

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Zest of half of a large orange

Half of a large vanilla bean

1 teaspoon pure orange extract

1. In large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; mix well. Using a fork, cut in 1 cup of butter, and mix until mixture is crumbly. In small bowl, beat eggs. Gradually add sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla and orange extract, beating until light. Add in the vanilla bean. To do this, simply slice open the pod, and scoop out all of the black speckly insides. Mix this in completely. After, mix in the orange zest. Slowly add to flour mixture in large bowl. Stir by hand until dough forms. (If necessary, knead dough with hands to mix in dry ingredients.) Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate 1 hour.

2. Heat oven to 350°F. Roll dough out 1 inch balls, and place (allowing room for growth) on a greased baking sheet – I use Baking Pam.

3. Bake at 350°F.for 9 to 11 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheets. Cool 15 minutes or until completely cooled if adding icing of some sort.

That’s it! Except I usually melt Hershey’s Dark Chocolate in a mug, and drizzle it on top with a fork. Everything just tastes a smidge better with chocolate!

I hope you try it out. Enjoy!

Christine

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