Saturday, May 23, 2009

Oreo Cookies

These were GREAT!! Nice rich chocolaty crunch and smooth vanilla filling. Just like I remember them (granted, it's been over three years since I had a 'real' oreo). In fact, they were better... everything is better extremely fresh. Try to ignore the fact that the filling is basically sugar and Crisco and just enjoy these babies.
I bet these wafers would make GREAT thin mint cookies if covered in melted peppermint-chocolate.
Original recipe from here. She has much better pictures (sorry-- I'm terrible with icing).

Makes ~18 2" diameter sandwich cookies (around 36 chocolate wafers)
15 minutes mixing + ~70 minutes baking + 20 minutes whipping icing and assembling cookies
Preheat 375 F
- large mixing bowl
- wire whisk or electric beater
- cookie sheet lined with Al foil or parchment paper

Chocolate Wafer
1/2 c. (1 stick) butter or dairy-free alternative
2. Tbsp. vegetable shortening*
1 egg
1.25 c. flour --> (3/4 c. brown rice flour + 1/2 c. Bob's Red Mill All Purpose Baking Flour + 1 heaping tsp. xanthan gum)
1/2 c. cocoa powder*
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1 c. white granulated sugar
dash of salt
Vanilla Icing
3 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp. vegetable shortening*
~1.5 c. powdered sugar
~1.5 tsp. vanilla extract

*Crisco is GF, Hershey's cocoa powder is GF,

Chocolate Wafer
0. Place stick of butter on the counter to reach room temperature. Make sure it is very soft before continuing. Preheat oven to 375 F.
1. Mix 1/2 c. butter, 2 Tbsp. shortening and 1 egg in a large bowl with a wire whisk (or electric beater) until well combined. The oils and egg don't have to be whipped or anything, just stirred till a uniform color.
2. Add in the brown rice flour, BRM All Purpose Baking Flour and xanthan gum over the top of the oil/egg mixture. Stir the flours together lightly with a large spoon, then add in the cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Again stir dry ingredients without incorporating the 'wet' below. When it looks consistent, mix deeper to include the wet ingredients. Stir entire contents of bowl; the cocoa will start out light brown, then get a nice dark chocolate look once mixed well with the egg/oils. Continue to mix by hand until no more clumps appear. The dough will be soft and have a shiny chocolate look to it.
3. Pinch off about a teaspoon of dough and roll it into a 1 inch diameter ball. The dough should yield about 36 spheres. Place spheres onto an aluminum foil coated (or parchment paper coated) cookie sheet, about 2 inches apart. Use a level-bottomed drinking glass and squish each ball flat out to about a 2" diameter (around 1/4" thick).
4. Place cookies into the oven and bake for
exactly 10 minutes at 375 F. They will come out soft, but will harden after cooling; wait at least a minute to transfer wafers to a cooling sheet. Continue baking; it took me a little over an hour to bake all of the balls-- I placed the waiting dough back into the fridge while cooking.
Vanilla Filling
0. Again, be patient and let the butter fully come to room temperature. Watch a Daily Show or something.
1. Place 3 Tbsp each of butter and shortening in a large bowl. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth. Add in the powdered sugar, mix by hand until the sugar is not as volatile.
2. Add in the vanilla extract 1/2 tsp. at a time, beating with the mixer after each addition. You are looking for a thick, creamy consistency here-- it IS oreo filling. Basically you want to add vanilla extract until the mixture just turns from 'grainy' to smooth. Compensate for too much liquid with a little more sugar.
3. Beat the filling for 2 to 3 minutes to get it extra creamy.
Place around 1 tsp. filling between two chocolate wafers. Press and twist the cookies together to mechanically bind the sandwich. If you want to add more icing, they'll come apart okay to do so. I suggest storing the cookies in the freezer, it makes them hold together better. Serve cold or at room temperature.

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