Sweetheart Sugar Cookies

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup butter-flavored shortening
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
Red gumdrop hearts (sugar-coated)
Vanilla flavored almond bark, vanilla flavored baking chips, or vanilla icing
Luster dust (opt.)
Wood skewers (opt.)

Cream together the butter, shortening, granulated and powdered sugars. Mix in egg and vanilla. Add baking soda, salt, cream of tartar and flour. Mix well until a soft dough is formed. Chill for several hours or overnight.

Roll a piece of dough into a ½-inch snake-like rope approximately 6 inches long. Wrap the rope around the outer edge of a gumdrop heart and pinch ends together at the top of the heart. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet (this will prevent sticking). Insert wood skewer into the bottom of the heart through the dough if you wish to make a “lollipop.” Continue wrapping each heart. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet.

Melt the almond bark or baking chips in the microwave or use icing. Place the chocolate or icing in a pastry bag with a small round piping tip. Pipe zig-zags, or swirls around the edge of the cookie. You may also wish to drizzle or pipe the chocolate or icing randomly over the entire cookie. To create a shimmering effect, lightly brush the chocolate or icing with luster dust after it has set.

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