Sunday, July 5, 2009

Red White and Blue Treats

After spending this morning watching the men's Wimbledon final and seeing Roger Federer win his 15th Grand Slam and regain his #1 spot in the rankings, I figured I would post the desserts I made for yesterday's 4th of July BBQ my family went to! I wanted to try something new and, of course, make it red/white/ I decided to make red velvet sandwich cookies/whoopie pies with white and blue cream cheese frosting! I found a recipe for red velvet sandwich cookies that looked kind of cakey, so I decided to try them out! I filled the cookies from that recipe with a simple cream cheese frosting, and I think they worked out pretty well!

Patriotic Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies

yield: around 18 sandwich cookies

for the cookies:
1 1/3 c. flour
2 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 c. unsweetened applesauce
1 tbsp. skim milk
1 c. sugar
1/4 c. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
2 egg whites
red food coloring (the amount depends on how red you want them to be)

for the cream cheese filling:
1/4 c. butter
4 oz. neufchatel
2 tsp. vanilla
2 c. confectioner's sugar (may need more)
food coloring (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 375F and line a baking sheet with a silpat (or parchment paper).
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a mixer, cream together the butter and the sugar, then beat in the egg whites. Once combined, fold in the applesauce, milk, vanilla, and food coloring.
  4. Using teaspoons, drop the batter onto the lined baking sheet making sure that the cookies are about 2 inches away from one another. Bake for 10 minutes.
  5. Allow to cool for a couple minutes on the pan, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
  6. To make the frosting, cream the butter and cheese in a mixer, add vanilla and food coloring (if you want it), then slowly add the confectioner's sugar until it gets to the desired consistency. When I made these cookies, I divided the frosting into 2 batches and dyed half of it blue!
  7. Once the frosting is done and the cookies are cool, sandwich every 2 cookies together with cream cheese frosting.
I liked these cookies a lot, but expected them to be a bit more cakey...they still tasted great though and looked very festive! I also put them in a red/blue basket (thanks Aunt Mary!), which I lined with red and blue napkins...overkill? I think not...

I was also kind of worried that they would not appeal as much to the chocolate-lovers in the crowd (and the little kids), so I made a batch of my lower-cholesterol chocolate chip cookies as well. I upped their patriotic factor by omitting the chocolate chips and instead using red and blue M&M's! The only hard part about this was sorting through 2 enormous bags of M&M's to pick out all the red and blue we now have a huge jar in my house full of orange, yellow, green, and brown M&M's!

These were also served in a red/blue/star-covered basket (thanks again Aunt Mary!)...and yes, I realize I get way too into holidays...but I love 'em!

Happy belated 4th and congrats to Federer on his 6th Wimbledon victory!

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