Friday, October 12, 2012

Egg Free Chocolate Cut-Out Halloween Sugar Cookies

I've been wanting to try this idea for quite sometime: making a chocolate sugar cookie.  The cookies turned out cakey and soft and pair perfectly with this buttercream frosting!  I came across this frosting recipe just a couple weeks ago and I love how it sets up.  It reminds me of the frosting on Lofthouse sugar cookies, yum!  Makes them a little easier to store too because the frosting can handle the gentle pressure of another cookie (just don't smash them- the frosting doesn't hold up that well)  Great the day they are made, but even better the day after!

Chocolate Cut-Out Halloween Sugar Cookies
From Egg Free Bakery

1/2 cup unsalted butter or margarine, softened
3 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup sour cream
3 cups flour 
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt 
Sprinkles, for decorating

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, cream together butter and cream cheese.  Let is whip for a good 2 minutes or so.  Add sugar and mix until combined and fluffy.  Add vanilla.  Then sour cream.  Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.  Add to butter mixture.  You may have to mix the rest of it together by hand.  Turn out onto a floured work surface and knead into a smooth ball, adding flour as needed so it's not too sticky.  Roll dough out into a 1/4 inch thickness and cut out shapes with floured cookie cutters.  (Note:  I end up using quite a bit of flour dusting my counter tops and dusting the dough so it's not sticky.  It should not be sticky.  If it is just knead a few more times and add a little more flour.  You can also pop it in the fridge for 30 minutes too before rolling it out.)  Place cut out cookies on greased cookie sheets.  Bake in preheated oven 8-10 minutes.  Let cool on cookie sheet 5-10 minutes before removing to wire rack to cool completely.  Yield: depends on size of cookies, about 2 dozen average size cookies.

Buttercream Frosting

1/3 cup butter, softened
2-1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp milk

In the bowl of a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, whip all the ingredients together until it is light and fluffy.  I find I get better results if I really let it whip for several minutes.  Add a few drops of food coloring, if desired and frost cookies immediately.  If using sprinkles, put them on soon after frosting as they won't stick as well once the frosting sets up.

*To make spider web design: frost cookie with white buttercream frosting.  Pipe store bought black decorating icing (I used betty crocker brand) in a spiral on top of the white.  Use a toothpick and pull through the icing sseveral times tarting at the center to create the spider web.  It takes some practice.  The one pictured was my third attempt and it is still not perfect.  It works though ;)

Sharing on Real Food, Allergy Free: Allergy Free Wednesday


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