This weekend was a total exercise in patience. After nearly 6 hours of baking, I finally finished making the cookies you see above. No 6 hours is not normal.
You see it all started Friday after work. I started mixing up a batch of vegan sugar cookies to make for the baby shower at church the next day. They looked delicious in the beginning but things felt apart shortly after I got them out of the oven. They never actually hardened up and pretty much fell apart once they made contact with my fingers.
I could deal with that if they tasted delicious so I decided to give them a try. And they were freaking awful. I got the recipe from a reputable blog so I assumed they would taste good. Boy was I wrong. Lessons learned don’t trust everything you read on blogs (except for mine of course).
From there, I had to start all over again from scratch. I figured that the culprit behind the vegan cookies demise was the lack of butter so I tossed the vegan label out the window and decided just to make some healthier sugar cookies.
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 sticks butter
- 3/4 cup agave
- 3 tablespoons egg white substitute
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
In a large measuring cup, measure out white whole wheat flour and add salt. Set aside for later.
In a large bowl, add butter and beat on medium for 2 minutes until fluffy.
Add agave to butter (you can add food coloring at this point if you want-I used a few blue drops to make a green colored cookie). Beat the mixture on medium for 2 minutes.
Add egg whites and vanilla to mixture and beat on medium for 1 minute.
Add half of your flour mixture and beat on low until flour is incorporated.
Add the rest of the flour and beat until the dough forms into a ball.
Now remove the dough from the bowl and separate it into two different balls. Flatten the balls into discs, wrap them with plastic wrap, and place them in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
While my dough was resting, I got my cookie cutters ready. I used these Message in a Cookie cutters from Williams Sonoma that we got as a wedding present. Since the cookies were for a baby shower, I decided to add the phrase “Welcome Baby Merz.”
Once the dough is finished resting, remove it from the fridge and roll it out until it’s about 1/2 inch thick.
Then use your cookie cutter to cut the dough. Next place the cut out cookies onto a parchment paper lined cookie sheet.
Once you’ve covered an entire cookie sheet, place the sheet into the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes. Make sure not to skip this step. It ensures that your cookies don’t rise too much or become too thick.
Once the cookies have chilled, place them in an oven preheated to 350 degrees for 15 minutes.
Remove the cookies from the oven and allow them to cool on the cookie sheets for 5 minutes. Then remove the cookies from sheet and place them on a cooling rack until completely cooled.
Now that your cookies are cooled off, they are ready for decorating. I have yet to find the perfect royal icing recipe so I decided to use this prepackaged icing from Michaels.
I used the icing to outline the cookies just to add a little extra oomph.
The cookies looked great with the extra decoration.
I’m glad I decided to put the extra effort into remake another batch of cookies. They went over really well at the baby shower.
So well in fact that everyone kept asking what the subtle flavoring was. I’m not sure but I think it’s that subtle sweet taste from the agave. It’s a really smooth flavor.
Even if you don’t get it right the first time in baking, chances are things will work out perfectly the second time. It’s worth the extra effort to make everyone smile a little bit bigger.
We can’t wait to meet you, Baby Merz.