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2000s Recipes + Menus

Stained-Glass Teardrops

MakesAbout 4 dozen cookies
  • Active time:45 min
  • Start to finish:3 1/4 hr (includes chilling dough)
December 2002
These are more window-like than your usual window cookies; using hard candies for the centers yields a thin, jewel-toned pane that shatters like glass when you bite into it.

This is just one of
Gourmet’s Favorite Cookies: 1941-2008. Although we’ve retested the recipes, in the interest of authenticity we’ve left them unchanged: The instructions below are still exactly as they were originally printed. Learn how to roll out thin cookie dough—with no mess and no extra flour.
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 6 to 8 oz individually wrapped assorted fruit-flavored hard candies such as sour balls
  • Special equipment:

    a 2- to 3-inch-wide teardrop-shaped cookie cutter; a nonstick baking pad such as Silpat; a 1- to 2-inch-wide teardrop-shaped cookie cutter
  • Whisk together flour and salt in a small bowl.
  • Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes in a standing mixer (preferably fitted with paddle attachment) or 6 minutes with a handheld, then beat in egg and vanilla. Add flour mixture and mix at low speed until just combined.
  • Form dough into 3 (5-inch) disks and chill, each disk wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 2 hours.
  • While dough chills, unwrap candies and separate by color in small heavy-duty sealable plastic bags. Seal bags, forcing out air, then coarsely crush candies by wrapping each bag in a kitchen towel and pounding bags with a rolling pin.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Roll out 1 piece of dough into a 9-inch round (1/8 inch thick) on a well-floured surface with floured rolling pin (keep remaining dough chilled). Cut out as many cookies as possible from dough with large cutter and transfer to a Silpat-lined baking sheet, arranging about 1 inch apart. Cut out centers from cookies with small cutter and add to scraps. Spoon about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed candy (depending on size of cutout) in center of each cookie. (If you want to use these cookies as tree ornaments, make a hole with a drinking straw in each for hanging.)
  • Bake in middle of oven until edges are golden, 10 to 12 minutes, then cool cookies completely on baking sheet on a rack, about 10 minutes. Transfer with a metal spatula to a plate or an airtight container. Gather scraps and chill until firm enough to reroll, 10 to 15 minutes. Make more cookies with remaining dough and scraps (reroll once) in same manner on cooled baking sheet.
Cooks’ notes:
  • Dough can be chilled up to 3 days.
  • If dough becomes too soft to roll out, rewrap in plastic and chill until firm.
  • Cookies keep, layered between sheets of wax paper or parchment paper, in an airtight container at room temperature 1 week.