Cook the Book: Eggnog Sandwich Cookies

[Photograph: Caroline Russock]

20091130-cookieman.jpgAs delicious as eggnog is, it can only really be enjoyed (in good conscience at least) during December. Drinking the sweet concoction of cream, sugar, nutmeg, and eggs would seem absolutely outlandish in, say, July, but when the air is crisp and pine-scented it seems only appropriate.

Since eggnog has such a limited window of enjoyment it seems only right to make the most of it, whether enjoyed in a latte, a pint of seasonally available ice cream, or these Eggnog Sandwich Cookies from The King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion.

Eggnog-inspired cookies have holiday joy written all over them. They manage to embody all of the rich flavors of nutmeg and rum, plus they're stuffed with a festive-colored filling. The dough was incredibly easy to work with and instead of going for the rounds (what the recipe called for) I went with holly and leaf-shaped cutters for some added whimsy. Without disclosing the ingredients, I shared these with some friends who were bowled over—not only by the outrageous eggnog flavor but also the wonderfully crisp texture and sweet pastel centers.

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Cook the Book: Eggnog Sandwich Cookies

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About This Recipe

Yield:33 cookies
This recipe appears in: All the Holiday Recipes You Need

Ingredients

  • For the dough:
  • 1/2 cup (3 1/4 ounces) vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon strong butter-rum flavor, or 1/2 to 1 teaspoon rum extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (2 3/8 ounces) white rice flour or corn starch
  • For the filling:
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 few drops strong butter-rum flavor, or 1/8 teaspoon rum extract
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons (1 1/2 to 2 ounces) cream or milk
  • Food coloring of your choice (optional)
  • For the topping:

Procedures

  1. 1

    In a large bowl, beat together the shortening, butter, sugar, salt, baking powder, vanilla, nutmeg, and rum flavor. Add the egg, beating until fluffy. Whisk together the flours and stir in. Divide the dough in half, shape into two rounds, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour or longer.

  2. 2

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease (or line with parchment) two baking sheets.

  3. 3

    Remove the chilled dough from the refrigerator and roll it into a 1/8-inch thickness on a lightly floured work surface. Use a cutter to cut 2 1/4-inch rounds and place them on the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 1 inch between them.

  4. 4

    Bake the cookies for 10 minutes, or until they've lightly browned around the edges. Remove them from the oven and transfer to a rack to cool.

  5. 5

    Mix the filling ingredients in a a medium-sized bowl, tinting gently with food coloring, if desired, to make a pastel colored filling. Spread a thin layer of filling on the bottom half of the cookies. Top with the remaining cookies. Store the cookies in airtight containers to several days, or freeze for longer storage.

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