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Saturday, February 14, 2015

Frosted Sugar Cookies (Soy, Nut and Fish-Free, Can Be Milk, Wheat and Egg-Free)


Happy Valentine's Day, all!  It is a cold and wintry one here!  I hope you are all staying warm, safe, and spending some time with friends and family, even if it is only by phone, text, email, letter, Skype, etc.  Let someone know that they are loved and what they mean to you while you can.  You never know when you'll get another chance, and you'll never regret saying, "I love you, and you mean so much to me!" to those you love.

Our church is having our Valentine's banquet tonight, and we were asked to bring desserts.  My dessert?  The cookies you see above.  These are a modified version of ones I found on Center Cut Cook.  They taste very similar to a certain soft, frosted sugar cookie you find in the stores.  I'm sure you know which ones I mean. :)  I've been looking for a copy-cat recipe for awhile, and these come close enough to satisfy my cravings for them...and these are more allergy-friendly!  This version is soy (if you use all soy-free ingredients), nut and fish-free, and can be milk, wheat and egg-free (see variations).  You can make these into cut-out cookies (which is the version I'll share first) or as round cookies (see variations).  No matter which way you make them, they are sure to become a family favorite!

Frosted Sugar Cookies

Cookie Portion:
1 Cup white sugar
1/2 Cup lard

2 eggs

1/2 Cup sour cream

1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons vanilla

3 Cups soy-free flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

Frosting Portion:
2 Cups powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 Cup butter, softened

 Dash (up to 1/8 teaspoon) salt

1 to 2 Tablespoons milk

  1.  Preheat the oven to 350oF.
      
  2. In large mixing bowl, mix together sugar, lard, eggs, sour cream and vanilla until well blended.
       
  3. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt to the sugar blend and mix until well blended. (Note: Dough will be soft and a bit sticky, like your traditional sugar cookie or peanut butter cookie doughs.)
       
  4. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough (either all or a portion at a time - your choice) until the dough is about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick.
     
  5. Cut dough with cookie cutters into desired shapes and place on ungreased cookie sheets about 1 inch apart.
      
  6. Bake cookies 6 to 8 minutes (less time if they are thinner/smaller cookies, longer if they are bigger/thicker cookies).  DO NOT OVER BAKE!  (Note:  Cookies will look pale, NOT golden brown.  You want to cook them until they look just cooked through (read that as dry or dull vs. shiny on top), but not until they are browned on top.  You are better off slightly under cooking these cookies than over cooking them.)
      
  7. Transfer cookies onto waxed paper or brown paper or cooling rake to cool completely.
      
  8. Repeat steps 4 through 7 until all the dough is used up.
      
  9. While the cookies are cooling, mix together all the ingredients for the frosting portion except the milk in a medium mixing bowl until well blended.
      
  10. Add the milk 1 Tablespoon at a time until the frosting is the right consistency for spreading.  (Note: You can add more milk a teaspoon at a time, if need be, to get the right consistency.  I prefer my frosting light and fluffy, so I beat mine a bit longer to get it that way, too.)
      

  11. When cookies are completely cooled, frost them and enjoy. (Note: You can decorate them with color sugar or sprinkles, too, but make sure those items fit into your dietary needs before doing so.)
Recipe makes at least 3 dozen cookies (I normally get between 40 and 50, depending on size).
Variations (Please keep your individual allergy and dietary needs in mind when using substitutions!): 
  • Round Frosted Sugar Cookies: Prepare the cookies the same way, except, instead of rolling them out, take a Tablespoon of dough and roll it into a ball.  Place the dough ball onto the ungreased cookie sheet and flatten it with your hand.  Repeat the process for each cookie, spacing them about 1 inch apart.  They should bake in about 6 to 7 minutes at this size.  You can make them bigger, but they will take slightly longer (about 10 minutes for a 2 Tablespoon-sized cookie).  Again, the cookies will NOT look done.  You want them to look the same as the cut-out cookies - dry or dull vs. shiny on top, but NOT browned.  Decorate them as desired once they are cooled, just like the cut-out version.
Round Frosted Sugar Cookies
  •  Milk-Free: Use any milk substitute of your choice for the milk.  Use any dairy-free "butter" for the butter in the recipe.  You can even use shortening, lard or coconut oil if they fit your dietary needs.  Sub a dairy-free yogurt (plain or vanilla) for the sour cream.
      
  • Wheat-Free: Use a gluten-free baking mix of your choice in place of the flour.  Keep in mind that the cookies will be a different texture if you use this substitution.
       
  • Egg-Free: Use an egg replacer for the eggs or any of the substitutions listed here for the eggs.
        
  • Other Fats: You can use shortening, butter, coconut oil, a dairy-free "butter", etc. for the lard or butter in this recipe.
       
  • Sour Cream Substitution: If you wish, you can replace the sour cream with vanilla or plain yogurt.
      
  • Colored Frosting:  You can color the frosting if you wish, using natural food colorings or traditional store-bought types that fit your allergen needs.
      
  • Flavored Frostings:  You can change the flavor of the frosting by using another extract other than vanilla that fits your allergen needs such as strawberry, almond, peppermint, coconut, etc.  You can even use it along side the vanilla if you wish or use another combo of extracts that sounds good to you.  I would not use more than a total of 2 teaspoons worth of extract, though.  Also, you could sub juice for the milk in the frosting for some flavor, leaving out the vanilla or not depending on your personal preference.

  
Don't they look delish?

Again, have a Happy Valentine's Day, everyone!

~*~*~*~
What's your favorite Valentine's treat?

What's your favorite cookie?