Thursday, July 22, 2010

How "Flookie"

Imagine, if you will... rich, French vanilla ice cream floating in a tall, frosty glass of root beer - but in solid form. No, it's not the Twilight Zone, nor is it some sort of astronaut ice cream invention. Rather, it is a sweet icebox sugar cookie that I have dubbed the "root beer flookie". Again, it's one of the many products that come from my occasional attempts to organize my pantry. I also wanted to bake something as a "welcome home" gift for my RMT, who just so happens to be a foodie in his own right! More than anything though, I think these cookies were the spawn of my hyperactive imagination and boredom one day... but if I can find people to pawn the goods off onto, I'll take that excuse too!

To get the rich flavour of the "root beer" part of the swirl (and what  made my RMT go "what is that flavour??"), I used a full bottle of LorAnn's Root Beer Flavouring (the 1-dram size). Don't be fooled by the tiny bottle though - that stuff is strong, and more than capable enough of doing the job for the entire cookie batch. Colouring was just a simple addition of cocoa powder, though I suppose if you had brown food colouring you could use that too! The French vanilla side of things was taken care of with one of my favourite cookie-making secrets - vanilla custard powder - and a nice shot of double-strength vanilla extract. Now, I know when the cookie purists out there read the ingredient list you are going to pooh-pooh the idea of using mostly shortening in the dough... well, the thing is, I have never had a whole lot of success with all-butter sugar cookies, since they spread way too much for my liking, and this ratio of shortening to butter seems to give both the best flavour and the best texture as far as the end product is concerned. I'm sure you can use all butter in these, just like how you could use all white flour instead of the blend of white and white whole wheat that I did.

Root Beer "Flookies"
Makes about 45
¾ cup sugar
pinch salt
2/3 cup shortening
1/3 cup butter, softened
1 egg white
2 1/4 cups flour
2 cups white whole wheat flour
1/8 tsp baking powder
¼ cup skim milk
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp LorAnn's root beer flavouring
1/2 tbsp water
1 tbsp vanilla custard powder (you can substitute an equal measure of cook-and-serve vanilla pudding)
1 tbsp pure double-strength vanilla extract

  1. Cream together sugar, salt, shortening and butter until fluffy.
  2. Add egg white, beat well.
  3. Combine flours and baking powder, and gently mix in alternately with the milk to form a smooth mixture.
  4. Divide dough in half.
  5. Add cocoa powder, root beer flavouring and water to one half of the dough, mixing well.
  6. To the other portion of dough, stir in custard powder and vanilla.
  7. Wrap doughs individually in plastic and chill 1 hour.
  8. Between sheets of parchment or waxed paper, roll out one of the doughs into a very thin, roughly rectangular layer.
  9. Separately, between more sheets of parchment or waxed paper, roll out the other portion in a similar fashion.
  10. Flip one dough portion on top of the other and trim the edges so the dough is a smooth rectangle.
  11. Beginning from one of the long edges, roll dough up into a log.
  12. Re-wrap in plastic and place in the freezer for 1 hour, until very firm (almost frozen).
  13. Preheat oven to 400F.
  14. Working quickly with a very sharp (or serrated) knife, cut discs of dough about a pencil-width thick and place cookies on a parchment or silicone-lined sheet (don't grease the sheet, though, it doesn't seem to work... and they don't spread too much so about 1/2" of space is fine).
  15. Replace excess dough in the freezer while the first batch bakes - you must bake these one sheet at a time.
  16. Bake 10 minutes on the lowest rack of the oven. Move parchment or silicone sheets to a rack to cool and bake subsequent sheets the same way.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 97.3
Total Fat: 4.6 g
Cholesterol: 5.3 mg
Sodium: 12.0 mg
Total Carbs: 12.6 g 
Dietary Fiber: 0.9 g
Protein: 1.7 g

1 comment :

Danielle said...

This looks so good! I haven't had a root beer float in ages but I think I like this 'version' much better :)