Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Scrumptious "Sugar" Cookies

What's Christmas without a sugar cookie??  For a child, this is the best cookie to load up with as much frosting and as many sprinkles as possible, making the cut out shape almost non-recognizable!  (As well as unappetizing to any adult, yet strangely attractive to all children!!)  Because I didn't want to deprive my kids of this common holiday tradition (I can just see it, "no, honey, we're not going to decorate any cookies like all of the other children do for Christmas...instead, why do you see what you can do with that plate of broccoli and spinach over there!")...I came up with a much healthier alternative that won't have your kids flying high with a sugar buzz, only to come crashing down minutes later!

Now, I do have to point out that I said "healthier" and not completely's really hard to come up with a frosting you can decorate with, that doesn't use powdered me, I've tried to figure it out...failed miserably!  I can promise you that the actual cookie is probably one of the most healthy (and good tasting) sugar cookies you'll if eaten in moderation, it's a very good compromise!

The Cookie:

Preheat oven to 375

-Sift then set aside:

3 c. King Arthur's White Whole Wheat Flour
3/4 t. baking powder
1/4 t. sea salt

-Cream together:

1/2 c. coconut oil (coconut oil is WAY healthier than butter...but if you don't have any, you can use all vegan butter...the original recipe actually calls for 1 c. butter)
1/2 c. Earth Balance Buttery Spread
3/4 c. agave (you can actually use a full c. of agave if you want...but I try to make the cookies just a little less sweet if they're going to be frosted...haven't had any complaints yet!)

-Add to the creamed mixture:

1 "egg" (1 eggs worth of prepared egg replacer)
1 T. unsweetened almond milk

-Add the flour mixture and mix.

-Pack into a ball and roll out the way you would sugar cookie dough.  Cut them out into simple circles, or let your kids go crazy and use their cookie cutters!!

-Bake for 7-9 minutes...I find that these harden up quite nicely, and they won't really brown in the oven, so DON'T over-bake them, because they'll be dry.

The Frosting:

Ok, side note:  Frosting is one of those things that I NEVER measure out...I just get a good feel for taste and texture and go with it.  I found a recipe to use as a base, if you follow it correctly, it will work out for sure...I just can't guarantee you it will be the same thing that I did when I made the frosting pictured above!

3 T. Earth Balance Buttery Spread (do not soften)
3 T. Tofutti Better than Cream Cheese (do not soften)

-Cream together until smooth (or your frosting will be lumpy and unattractive!)


2 1/4 c. powdered sugar (I cringe just writing this out...but honestly, I haven't been able to do a good piping frosting without it...PLEASE let me know if you find something!)
1/8 t. sea salt

-Beat until a very firm frosting begins to emerge, and add:

2-4 t. of almond milk (add very slowly, because you definitely want a firm frosting)
1 t. vanilla

-Taste the frosting...if it tastes good, but is runny, add more powdered sugar...if it tastes too sugary, add more butter (make sure you beat it up smoothly before you add it)

-Divide and add food coloring

-Top with your favorite sprinkles, or just eat them plain...either way...this recipe spells WINNER!  Enjoy!

-Note:  to make the intricate designs, I put some frosting into a plastic baggie, and cut the tip off of one of the corners (not too big...start small, and cut more if you need to).  Twist the bag to get rid of all the air, and squeeze frosting through the hole.  This is WAY cleaner than letting your kids use knives and bowls of frosting, and they think they are pretty cool doing it!  My 4 yr old LOVES piping, and is getting pretty good at it!!

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