2 C all-purpose flour
1/4 t salt
1/4 t cinnamon (optional)
1 C (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 C powdered sugar
1 t pure vanilla extract plus a few extra drops (anytime anything calls for vanilla I always put add a little extra)
For chocolate dipping:
9 ounces super fancy semi-sweet chocolate (or white or dark chocolate)
Whisk together the flour, salt, and cinnamon. In a mixer (stand or by hand), mix the butter until it's creamy, then add the sugar and let that beat for a couple minutes until it's nice and blended. Beat in the vanilla, then STIR in the flour mixture only just until it's all incorporated. You don't want to over-beat it.
Take the dough out of the bowl and mush it together into a fat disk shape. Wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for an hour. (I kept mine in the fridge for three hours because I had to run out of the house and when I took it out it was very difficult to work with.)
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. If you're using a non-stick pan, you're good to go. If you have an older crappy pan like me, you should probably grease that sucker with baking Pam or some shortening (it doesn't hurt the flavor, either!). Lightly flour your work space and pin. Roll the dough out into a 1/4" thickness circle, cut out your shapes, and place them on your baking sheet, at least 1/2" away from each other (they won't expand very much). After your pan is full, stick it in the fridge again for about 10 minutes. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the cookies have just started to lightly brown. Cool on a wire rack.
While your cookies are cooling... either chop up your chocolate (if using a bar), or just dump the chips in a microwavable bowl. Microwave for about one minute or until the chocolate is halfway melted. Then stir it until it's all melted and smooth. Take your baking sheet and stick it in the freezer to cool it down. Then line it with either parchment paper or plastic wrap. Dip your cookies and put them on the lined baking sheet. Once the sheet is full, put it in the fridge for 20 minutes to harden the chocolate.
Now, pour yourself a glass of milk and enjoy your festive grown-up cookies! I am.