April 8th, 2012
Recipe developed by Paula Bowman
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 rimmed sheet pans with parchment paper and set aside. Sort candies by colour and place in separate resealable plastic bags. Use a rolling pin or the bottom of a heavy bottomed saucepan to crush the candies into small pieces. Set aside.
In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to cream together butter, sugar and salt until pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add egg and vanilla and mix well. Reduce speed to low and add flour into butter mixture, ½-cup at a time. Shape dough into a disk, wrap in plastic and refrigerate until chilled, about 30 minutes. Roll to a ¼-inch thickness on a lightly floured surface or on a sheet of parchment paper. Cut out shapes with a 3- to 4-inch cookie cutter and transfer to prepared sheet pan using a thin spatula. Arrange shapes along top and bottom of sheet pan with bottoms facing inwards. Insert a candy stick ½-inch into the base of each cookie, if using. Use small cookie or fondant cutters, the wider end of a piping tip or the tip of a paring knife to make smaller cutouts inside the cookie shape. Gather scraps of dough together and re-roll, as necessary. Refrigerate dough on sheet pans until firm, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle reserved crushed candy into centre of each cutout, being careful not to spill onto the edges of the cookie.
Bake cookies until candy has melted and cookie edges are just starting to turn pale golden brown, about 12-15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cookies cool completely before removing from sheet pans.