Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer using the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla or almond extract; beat for another minute. With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture; beat until all of the flour is incorporated. The mixture will look crumbly at first; keep blending until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.
Remove half of the dough from the bowl and form into a smooth ball. Roll the dough ball out onto a lightly floured work surface to 1/4-inch thick (do not make them thinner, you want the cookies to be on the thick side) and cut into desired shapes with cookie cutters. Repeat with remaining dough.
Bake cookies for 8-10 minutes (depending on the size and thickness of your cookies) or until the edges are slightly golden and the centers are just barely set.
Cool cookies on baking sheet for a minute or two, and then carefully remove them to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating. Yields: 3-4 dozen cookies depending the on the size of your cookie cutters.
How cute are these Christmas Sugar Cookies that the kids decorated with Royal Icing and sprinkles!?!