Cream-Filled Maple Leaf Cookies
Cream-filled maple leaf cookies showcase the bounty of the country’s many maple farms. If you’ve never had one, now’s the time to enjoy this sandwich cookie filled with maple buttercream frosting. Free of nuts, peanuts and yeast. Contributed from The Allergy-Free Cook Bakes Cakes and Cookies*by Laurie Sadowski (Book Publishing Co, ©2013)
Makes: 24 large sandwich cookies
- 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons sorghum flour
- 1⁄2 cup quinoa flour
- 1⁄2 cup tapioca flour, plus more for rolling
- 11⁄2 teaspoons xanthan gum
- 1⁄2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 cup vegan buttery spread
- Heaping 3⁄4 cup maple sugar
- 1⁄2 cup pure maple syrup (grade B; see tip)
- 1 tablespoon nondairy milk
- 2 teaspoons ground flaxseeds
Maple Buttercream Frosting:
- 1⁄2 cup vegan buttery spread
- 2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted, plus more as needed
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup (grade B; see tip)
- 3⁄4 teaspoon maple extract
To make the cookies, put the sorghum flour, quinoa flour, tapioca flour, xanthan gum, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir with a dry whisk until combined.
Put the vegan buttery spread and maple sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer, with the paddle attachment, or a large bowl. Using the stand mixer or a hand mixer, beat until smooth and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Turn the mixer to low speed. Con- tinue to beat while adding the maple syrup in a steady stream. Add the nondairy milk and flaxseeds. Beat until well combined, occasionally stopping to scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula if necessary.
With the mixer still on low speed, gradually add the flour mixture to the maple sugar mixture, beating until well combined. The dough will be very soft. Turn off the mixer.
Divide the dough into two portions. Put two sheets of plastic wrap on a flat sur- face. Scrape the first portion of dough onto one sheet of plastic wrap using a rubber spatula and form it into a ball. Wrap the dough tightly in the plastic wrap. Repeat with the remaining dough and plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
Remove one portion of the dough from the refrigerator (keep the other portion in the refrigerator). Unwrap the dough and put it on a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough with a lightly floured rolling pin until it’s 1⁄8 to 1⁄4 inch thick (the thinner you roll the dough, the crispier the cookies will be). Cut the rolled dough using a cookie cutter shaped like a maple leaf. Transfer the cookies to a lined baking sheet using a thin metal spatula or butter knife (12 to 15 cookies will fit on one baking sheet). Leftover scraps of dough will be too soft to reroll; rewrap the scraps in the plastic wrap and put them in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes before rerolling.
Refrigerate the unbaked cookies on the baking sheet for 10 minutes. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until the cookies are browned on the edges and slightly firm to the touch. Let cool on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes, until firm. Carefully remove the cookies from the baking sheet and put them on a cooling rack.
Repeat until all the dough has been rolled, cut, and baked (this should take four or five rounds). Let the cookies cool completely before you prepare the frosting.
To make the frosting:
Put the vegan buttery spread in the bowl of a stand mixer, with the paddle attachment, or a large bowl. Using the stand mixer or a hand mixer, beat until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add 1 cup of the confectioners’ sugar. Beat until smooth. Add the maple syrup, maple extract, and the remaining cup of confection- ers’ sugar. Continue to beat until smooth and well combined, about 2 more minutes. If the frosting is too thin, add more confectioners’ sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the desired consistency is achieved.
To assemble the cookies:
Put 1 heaping tablespoon of frosting on the bottom of a cookie and spread the frosting evenly using a butter knife or spreader. Press a second cookie, bottom-side down, on top of the frosting. Repeat with the remaining cookies and frosting.
Stored in a sealed container, the cookies will keep for 3 days at room tempera- ture or 1 month in the freezer. These cookies taste good right after they are made, but they taste even better after a few hours or the next day.
Use grade B maple syrup to give these cookies a strong maple flavor; grade A maple syrup is too mild for this recipe. If you don’t have grade B maple syrup and must use grade A, add 1⁄2 teaspoon of maple extract to the cookie dough when you add the nondairy milk and flaxseeds. Also add 1⁄2 teaspoon of additional maple extract to the frosting. The dough and frosting can both be adjusted to taste.
If you want the cookies to have the detailed look of a veined maple leaf, use the tip of a butter knife to create shallow indents (veins) in the cookie after it’s cut out and before it’s baked.
As an alternative to spreading the frosting on the cookies with a butter knife, use a cake-decorating bag to pipe the frosting onto the cookies. Start by piping around the edge of a cookie, then fill in the center.
Any leftover frosting can be frozen and used to frost cupcakes.
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