Servings: 3 dozen
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter
1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg yolks
1 medium vanilla bean
Colored sugar and prepared frosting for decorating
In a large bowl, sift or whisk together flour, pumpkin pie spice, ginger, allspice and cardamom; set aside.
Combine butter, sugar and salt in large bowl. Using an electric mixer or wooden spoon, beat until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks, one at a time, and beat until smooth. Using a small knife, split the vanilla bean in half, lengthwise. Scrape the seeds from both sides of the pod with the tip of the knife and add them to the butter-sugar mixture; beat to combine. Add in flour-spice mixture, 1 cup at a time, blending until fully incorporated.
Divide the dough in half; wrap in plastic. Refrigerate at least one hour or until firm.
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove and unwrap 1/2 the dough on a lightly-floured surface. Roll out to 1/4-inch thick. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters and transfer to prepared baking sheets. Roll out scraps and repeat with remaining dough, re-chilling as necessary.
Sprinkle with decorative colored sugar if desired; bake until golden brown, about 12 minutes.
Cool on sheets or wire racks, frost if desired.
Store in airtight container for up to one week.