Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Jam Filled Bow Tie Cookies made with Ultragrain

Many people think registered dietitians have "off-limit" foods that they never allow themselves to enjoy.  For most, that is simply not true.  The dietitians I know employ a moderation strategy which allows them to live a very healthy lifestyle while still enjoying a sweet treat at a Birthday party, the Holidays or after dinner like the rest of the world!  I am no exception!  Around the Holidays, cookies can be a favorite treat as we travel to parties, have friends bring over platters of delicate morsels made with love and care!  I'm big on traditions, and this is one that persists for many families who get together and spend a day in the kitchen passing down special recipes that have persisted for generations. 
I decided to add a healthy element to my Holiday baking this year by adding Ultragrain All Purpose Flour, which gives baked goods whole grain nutrition with white flour appeal.  Most Americans don't  get enough whole grains, so I wanted to test the ability of my friends and family to discriminate my normal flour cookies against these made with Ultragrain!  I wondered if the color and texture would be different for these fun bow tie cookies, but to my delight, they turned out just as well as they did in times past with regular flour!

These adorable and elegant little bundles of jam were not only beautiful, but oh so tasty!  I plan on bringing them around to friends and family to test their taste buds.  I certainly can't tell!  I hope you'll give Ultragrain a try when you make your next batch of cookies and add a "better-for-you" touch to your baking!

Jam Filled Bow Tie Cookies or “Kolaches”
Makes about 70 cookies
* 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
* 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted organic butter, softened
* 2-1/2 cups Ultragrain® all-purpose flour, sifted, plus more for rolling out the dough
* approximately 3/4 cup good quality jam (peach, apricot, or your favorite)
* One large egg, preferably free-range, beaten
* Powdered (confectioners’) sugar, for dusting the finished cookies
1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes). Scrape down the bowl and paddle.
2. With the mixer on low, add the flour gradually, beating well after each addition. Mix until a smooth dough forms.
3. Turn dough out onto a work surface dusted with flour and knead briefly to form a ball. Divide the dough into three equal portions and wrap each in plastic or waxed paper. Flatten each piece of dough into a square and refrigerate overnight.
4. Heat oven to 400°F. Line 3 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Remove one piece of dough from the refrigerator and roll it out on a lightly floured surface into a 1/8-inch-thick rectangle. Trim the rough edges of the dough so the sides are straight, and so the piece of dough measures 8 inches by 8 inches. Cut dough into 2-inch squares.
5. Spoon 1/2 teaspoon of jam onto the center of each square. Fold one corner into the center, dab with the beaten egg, and then bring the opposite corner into the center. Pinch firmly together to seal the corners (make sure to do this, or your bow-ties will open up in the oven). Transfer cookie to cookie sheet and repeat the process with the remaining dough.
6. Bake one sheet at a time until lightly browned on the bottoms and puffed, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely and then dust with powdered sugar.
7. These cookies can be frozen in a sealed container for up to 3 months.
Adapted from “Healthy Green Kitchen”

Disclosure: Ultragrain by Ardent Mills is one of my sponsors and supplied free product for this post. The opinions in this blog are my own. 

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