Yield: About 2 dozen cookies
Nothing says holidays like smelling cinnamon in the air. These cookies are like a cinnamon roll only better, because you can eat them with your hands without getting sticky. This recipe dough can be frozen and then baked any time you want the house to smell delicious while preparing hot chocolate.
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup tiny cinnamon flavored hard candy
3/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Red food coloring paste
Wax paper, 12 inches wide
In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
Using a grinder or a food processor with a knife blade, finely grind the cinnamon candy and set aside.
In a large bowl, add the butter and sugar. Use a mixer, set on medium speed, to combine and cream the ingredients.
When the butter and sugar reach a smooth consistency, change the mixer’s speed to low. Add the egg and vanilla extract into the bowl and mix well.
Gradually add the flour mixture and blend until everything is well combined. Be sure to scrape the side of the bowl with a rubber spatula as you blend the ingredients. This helps to ensure that your dough is uniform throughout.
Divide the dough into two portions. Move half of the dough to a small bowl. This will be your cinnamon dough. Set the other half aside. This will be the plain dough.
Over the dough you moved to the bowl, evenly sprinkle the ground cinnamon candy. With your hands, thoroughly knead the dough to mix in the cinnamon candy.
Add the red food coloring paste, mixing the dough well. Add more paste, if needed, to tint the dough to a shade of your liking.
Tear off two 12×18 inch sheets of wax paper and place them side by side on your work surface. Place the cinnamon dough in the middle of one sheet. Flatten the dough a bit by pressing or patting it down. Cover the dough with the other sheet of waxed paper.
Using a rolling pin on the outside of the wax paper, roll the cinnamon dough into a 10×15 inch rectangle. If the paper wrinkles, remove the sheet and replace it with a new one. Roll over the new sheet to remove any indentations in the dough.
Repeat the process with the plain dough which was set aside earlier.
Refrigerate the dough rectangles, still between the sheets of wax paper, until they are chilled yet still pliable, approximately 10-15 minutes.
Take the dough out of the refrigerator. Remove the top sheet of paper from each rectangle.
Place the sheet with the plain dough in front of you on your work surface. The long sides of the sheet should be at the top and bottom as you look at the rectangle.
Move the cinnamon rectangle from the wax paper to rest atop the plain layer of dough. The edges of the two layers should line up evenly.
Starting at the bottom, roll the layered rectangles together tightly, as you would roll a jellyroll. Wrap the log in plastic wrap and freeze at least 2 hours. The dough should be firm enough to slice without flattening the roll as you slice the dough into cookies.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and lightly grease a large cookie sheet.
Remove the firm log of dough from the freezer and place on your work area or large cutting board.
Use a sharp knife to cut the dough into slices, approximately 1/4 inch thick. Place the cookie slices on your baking sheet. Space them about 1 inch apart.
Bake the cookies about 15 minutes or until the edges are a light golden brown in color. When the cookies are done, remove them from the oven and place the cookies on a wire rack to cool.
Adapted from: http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/recipefinder/cinnamon-pinwheels-2531