- 3 cups flour
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cups sugar
- 1 tsp. almond extract
- 1 large egg
- 1 egg white
- confectioner's sugar
- food color
- thin pretzel sticks
- raisins, currents and/or dried cherries
- red hots
- icing eyes
- roasted peanuts
- chocolate chips
- wooden skewer
- squirt bottles for icing (optional)
1. Whisk flour and salt together in a small bowl. In a large bowl, with an electric mixer at medium speed, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 2-3 minutes).
2. Beat in almond extract and then egg. Scrape bowl.
3. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and blend on low speed. Gradually add remaining flour until combined.
4. Shape into 2 balls and refrigerate, covered with plastic wrap, for at least 2 hours.
5. Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment and form bugs into 2"-3" ovals or balls, 1" thick. Decorate with items such as red hots, peanuts, raisins or chocolate chips.
6. Bake 15 minutes. As soon as cookies come out of the oven, poke holes with a wooden skewer to insert pretzels or candy strips.
7. When cool, complete decorations with candy eyes and other features attached with royal icing. Mix your own recipe, or use this one if you don't mind raw egg white:
To make a small amount of royal icing, beat one large egg white until foamy and slightly thickened. Add confectioner's sugar 1/2 cup at a time until icing is the consistency desired. Use thick icing to attach eyes and candy, thinner icing in a squirt bottle to draw stripes, etc. Tint with food color.
These sugar bugs just came out of the oven with decorations that can be baked - red hots and chocolate chips for spots and roasted peanut wings.
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