Insomnia. As long as you don’t have anything of great importance to do the next day, it can actually be quite productive. I don’t suffer from it very often but when I do, I like to visualize my house re-decorated in different ways and create recipes in my head while I’m waiting to get back into the dream world. A couple of weeks ago when I had one of those sleepless nights, I was trying to think of all the different ways I could make a sugar cookie. This rich and decadent recipe was what I came up with. Dark and chocolately, kind of naughty…the black sheep in the family of sugar cookies.
Cherry & Sea Salt Double Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Makes about 28 2 1/2 in. cookies, give or take 1 or 2 testers
1/3 Cup Butter (I used Earth Balance Vegan Sticks)
1/3 Cup Shortening (I used Crisco)
2 Cups Mama’s Almond Blend All Purpose Gluten Free Flour
2 Tbsp. Chocolate Rice Milk
1 tsp. Instant Coffee Granules
1 tsp. Baking Powder
3/4 tsp. Xanthan Gum
1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
1 tsp. Vanilla
(See Frosting Recipe Below)
Cream margarine and shortening until completely combined and fluffy, scraping down once during process.
Dissolve the coffee granules in the 2 Tbsp. of chocolate rice milk.
Add about half of the flour, the egg, sugar, milk and coffee mixture, baking powder, xanthan gum,vanilla, and salt, to the creamed butter and shortening. Mix on low until the flour is incorporated and then beat until all ingredients are thoroughly combined. Add the remaining cup of flour and beat again until thoroughly combined, scraping down bowl once or twice during the process. Remove batter from bowl, form into disc, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
After the dough has chilled, remove from fridge and allow to sit on the counter for about 10 minutes. Flour your work surface with gluten-free flour. Working with 1/2 of the dough at a time, roll out to about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick.
Cut into desired shapes and place on lined baking sheets. Bake at 375 degrees for 8 minutes. Allow to rest on sheets for a couple of minutes before transferring to cooling racks, allow to cool completely before frosting.
Rich & Decadent Chocolate Frosting
1 1/2 Cups Enjoy Life dairy free, gluten-free, miniature chocolate chips
1 tsp. Instant Coffee Granules, heaping
1/2 Cup Hot Water
1/2 Cup Dried Cherries, chopped small
Course Sea Salt
Place chocolate chips in a glass measuring cup. Sprinkle in the instant coffee granules and pour 1/2 cup hot water over chips and coffee granules. Let sit 5 minutes. Stir.
Microwave in 10 second increments, stirring in between, until chocolate is smooth. Be careful not to overheat the chocolate.
Chop the cherries into small pieces. They will stick together but you can separate them with your fingers when you place them on the cookies.
Place a cooling rack over parchment paper, I used the parchment paper that I baked the cookies on, and lay cookies out on rack. Stirring the chocolate as you go along, frost each cookie with about a teaspoon of chocolate. Carefully spread around the cookie with the spoon.
Carefully separate the cherries with you fingers and drop a few on each cookie. Wait 10 minutes and sprinkle with a small amount of course sea salt. Allow frosting to set completely before storing.
It has been my experience that chocolate frosting or glaze does not freeze well. The fat solidifies and floats to the top, turning the cookies a speckled white. These cookies are to be enjoyed fresh.