Santa Claus Sugar Cookies

1 cup unsalted butter
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
6 tablespoons 2% milk
2-1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
6-3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
Optional decorations: red colored sugar, miniature semisweet chocolate chips and Red Hots

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. In another bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, nutmeg and salt; gradually beat into creamed mixture.

Divide dough in half. Shape each into a disk; wrap in plastic. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm enough to roll. Preheat oven to 375°. On a lightly floured surface, roll each portion of dough to 1/4-in. thickness. Cut with a floured 3-in. Santa-shaped cookie cutter. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes or until light brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool completely.

For frosting, in a large bowl, beat butter until creamy. Beat in milk, vanilla and salt. Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Pipe onto cookies and decorate as desired. Makes about 4 dozen.