Ho, Ho, Oh Dear…

Bah Humbug!  Okay that is a little strong, but, I have suffered yet another disappointment in the kitchen.  I was really looking forward to producing an array of slimmed down holiday baked goods to share with all of you and my friends and family.  Unfortunately I am striking out left and right.

Yesterday I went in search of a sugar cookie recipe that I could tweak a little to reduce the fat and calories.  I found one geared toward diabetics that had a huge list of ingredients including brown sugar and corn syrup, far too fussy for my mood.  Then, I came across Alton Brown’s Sugar Cookies on foodnetwork.com and felt sure that his straight forward and moderately scientific approach would yield just the cookie I was in the mood for.  It seemed a little heavy on the flour and oddly did not include vanilla, or any other flavoring, but I went ahead and followed the recipe.

I, as always, changed a few things.  The cup of sugar became a half cup of sugar and a half cup of sugar blend (xylitol, maltodextrin, and sucralose), I substituted Smart Balance for the unsalted butter, and I added vanilla bean seeds.

The cookie dough came together easily, despite my less than efficient hand mixer.  I thought it tasted very plain and not particularly sugary but I wrapped to chill for a couple of hours.  Alton instructs bakers to roll the dough out using powdered sugar to prevent sticking.  I generally use flour but since the dough was not particularly sweet I tried it, sparingly.

The dough cracked and crumbled while I was trying to work it and then stuck to my rolling pin as I attempted to get it to a consistent 1/4 thickness.  It cut and transfered to the cookie sheets decently and baked quickly without losing to much of the shape.

The resulting cookies were cute but tasted more like a dry shortbread than the slightly sweetened cookies I imagined.  I did have fun squirting on the icing from little store bought tubes.  The icing sweetened them up enough to be okay but not great.

I think it is time for me to hang up my baker’s hat for awhile and get back to cooking.  Reinventing baked goods seems more scientific than I can manage at the moment.  The realization brings me back to high school chemistry.  I had a terrible time with the math and without my lab partner I am pretty sure I wouldn’t have passed the class.  Not surprising, Venessa, my former lab partner is now a stellar pastry chef and here I am, still trying to figure it all out!

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Ho, Ho, Oh Dear…

  1. Alright, you have to get down here next week with all your newfangled ingredients and we will make you a lower sugar, lighter recipe that you can be proud of, be it meringues (which I want to get right too, and I have a new recipe to try) or sugar cookies. We'll use my tools and your ingredients, and we'll get it right, or I'll have to hang up my hat too!

Comments, questions, or just say "hi"! Leave a note below, I'd love to hear from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s