Be My (Early) Valentine

On February 14, I will be on an airplane to London. No doubt, under the right set of circumstances, a transatlantic flight has the potential to be the very height of romance. But unless Cupid has taken up an overactive interest in my love life as of late, a fitful snooze next to a perfect stranger, sharing each other's (and everyone else's) recirculated air, is about as sexy as my Valentine's Day is going to get.

To offset the dreary fate of my actual V-day, everyone is getting sweet nothings from me in the form of heart-shaped sugar cookies (for those of you far away, I'm sorry, the pictures will have to suffice).

It's funny, while I usually make my whole wheat sugar cookies around this special day in February, rarely I am struck by an urge to make them the rest of the year. But a few days ago, without even realizing how near we were to the holiday, I was seized by an overwhelming yen for these delectable sandy cookies with their subtle almond flavor and thick pink frosting. Only after I set about looking for the recipe did I realize the timeliness of my craving. I guess it lends credence to that notion that love floats through the air. Perhaps even in confined cabin spaces overseas.

Whole Wheat Sugar Cookies Recipe + a Caveat

As some of you know, I initially couldn't find my recipe for these cookies, and I never did (yet another casualty of my nomadic lifestyle). What follows is an amalgamation of several sugar cookie recipes, plus my remembrances of the original. Reports are that they taste fine, but I can't guarantee that what follows is exactly what I did when I threw them together.

1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon soda
1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups wheat flour

Cream together butter and sugar. Add and mix egg, milk, and extracts. Mix in remaining dry ingredients. Cover dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for half an hour. Roll out chilled dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into shapes. Bake cookies in preheated oven at 375 degrees for 7-8 minutes till just oh-so-lightly browned around the edges. Frost! And enjoy!

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