3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup white sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, salt and baking soda. In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with hand mixer), beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes). Add the eggs and vanilla extract and beat until combined. Add the flour mixture and beat until you have a smooth dough. Divide the dough in half and wrap each half in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for about one hour or until firm enough to roll.
Preheat oven to 350F and place rack in center of oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Remove one half of the chilled dough from the refrigerator and, on a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/4 inch (keep turning the dough as you roll, making sure the dough does not stick to the counter). Cut out desired shapes using a lightly floured cookie cutter and transfer cookies to baking sheets. Place baking sheets with the unbaked cookies in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes to chill the dough which prevents the cookies from spreading and losing their shape while baking.
Bake cookies for about 8-10 minutes (depending on size) or until the edges are just starting to brown. Remove from oven, and let cookies cool on baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Makes about 36 cookies.
Courtesy of Joy of Baking