Saturday, March 14, 2009

A beautiful day with Ricotta Cookies

A few days ago I woke up after a rough nights sleep, looked out the window and saw the shining sun and melting snow. Suddenly my sleepless night didn't matter anymore. I was getting the ultimate summer bug. Whenever I see that first peek of sunshine after a long winter my whole body feels energized. I want to go running, play volley ball...and bake! I guess you could say everything makes me want to bake, seeing a colorful fabric that reminds me of the perfect color of frosting, going to a bistro and seeing their yummy sweets, or finding those perfect sprinkles I just have to use! But this urge was different. I knew I had to open every window in my kitchen welcoming the fresh spring air, bringing a positive influence on what I was about to bake. My mother in law requested that I make some of my ricotta cookies for a few of her friends and today was the perfect day to make them. These ricotta cookies are a family favorite. My mother-in-law raves about them. I think it's their cakey texture that makes them unique and delicious. It also doesn't hurt that they have a healthy dollop of cream cheese frosting to finish them off. Most recipes for ricotta cookies call for an almond glaze, but that doesn't cut it for me so I opt for the cream cheese frosting. Every time I make these I try out a different cream cheese frosting and this time I found my favorite. So far it's the best cream cheese frosting I have made but I am still on the hunt for the ultimate cream cheese frosting so if anyone has a good recipe I would love to see it! Hope you enjoy these lovely cookies and have a lovely day!

Everything ready to get creamed!

Delicious batter that is way too good to pass up! This recipe makes about
45 cookies but I get around 43 because I get a little carried away
eating the dough.

Ready to bake!

Ready to deliver...and eat:)

Italian Ricotta cookies-makes about 45

2 sticks butter, softened
1 3/4 c. sugar
2 eggs
15 oz. ricotta cheese
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp almond extract
4 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven o 350

In a med. bowl cream butter, sugar, eggs, ricotta, and vanilla. Add flour all at once and then pulse the mixture until it forms a workable dough. Scoop with small cookie or ice cream scoop onto an ungreased cooking sheet. Bake 10-12 min. until lightly browned.

Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz. cream cheese
5 T. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. almond extract
pinch of salt
about 4 cups powdered sugar

In a stand mixer, use whisk attachment and whip cream cheese and butter until really fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add salt and flavorings. Add powdered sugar and whip again. Can add more powdered sugar till consistency is how you like it.

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