Introduction: Snowconut Man (Vegan Sugar Cookies)


It doesn't need to be snowing for you to build these coconutty snowmen and snowflakes!

Cookies
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbs egg replacer plus 6 Tbs water (or 2 eggs)
  • 2 Tbs coconut milk
Icing
  • 3  cups powdered sugar
  • 5  Tbs coconut milk
  • 1  tsp almond extract
  • Red, green and orange food coloring
Snowman Accessories
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 oz chocolate
Tools
  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring cups/spoons
  • Rolling pin
  • Baking sheets
  • Small prep bowls
  • Icing piping bag
  • Mixer
  • Plastic wrap
  • Candy mold (with slots for sticks)
  • Knife
  • Clay
  • Silicone putty
  • Latex gloves
  • Snowflake/star cookie cutter

Step 1: Mix Cookie Dough

Beginning with a basic sugar cookie recipe  I wanted to see how many ingredients I could replace with coconut.  This was my first attempt at baking with coconut flour and the initial idea was to go for gluten-free cookies, but the density of the flour made it difficult to maintain a sugar cookie texture. The final product was reached by slightly reducing the total amount of flour, keeping wheat flour in the recipe,and increasing the volume of the wet ingredients.

This was the best ratio I hit upon (but there is certainly more experimenting to do!)

In a mixing bowl, sift (or thoroughly blend):
1 1/2 cups flour*
1 cup coconut flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

In a larger mixing bowl, beat together:
1 cup coconut oil
1 cup sugar

And then add:
1 Tbs egg replacer plus 3 Tbs water (or 2 eggs)
2 Tbs coconut milk

Now mix the dry ingredients in batches to the wet ingredients until fully incorporated.  The dough is still crumbly, add a couple Tablespoons of water  to reach a more chocolate chip cookie dough consistency.

Wrap dough and refrigerate for at least an hour.

*I used whole wheat pastry flour, regular white flour should be fine, but a little more liquid may be needed.

Step 2: Snowman Arms, Eyes, Nose and Buttons

The hour+ that the dough is chilling is a great time to make the snowman props. 
  1. For the arms, I melted a few squares of chocolate in the microwave (run on 'high' 15 seconds at a time and stir in between) and poured it into the stick-end of a candy mold. I allowed it to set in the fridge, removed from the mold and cut in half.
     
  2. The eyes and buttons are more coarsely chopped bits of chocolate to resemble coal.
     
  3. The nose is just a tiny bit of orange icing piped out and left to dry until assembly time.

Step 3: Cast a Sugar Hat


Nothing says class like a top hat, and no one is classier than a snowman!

To make the mold...
  • Mold a hat out of clay (measure size against smallest prep bowl)
  • Bake clay hat, if called for
  • Mix silicone putty and press fully cooked hat into it
  • Allow silicone to cure and remove clay hat

Step 4:


To make the sugar hat...
  • Mix 1/2 cup granulated sugar with 1/2 tsp egg replacer
  • Add black food coloring and a few tablespoons of water (You're going for a wet sand texture)
  • Press sugar into the mold as hard as you can
  • Flip mold over on to baking sheet and carefully tap/push sugar out of the mold
  • Bake at 200oF for 10 minutes and allow to cool
  • Pipe green icing ribbon, red berries and/or sprinkles around rim

Step 5: Icing


Beginning with one recipe, three levels of icing are needed...

1. Construction-Grade Icing

You will need...
  • 3  cups powdered sugar
  • 5  Tbs coconut milk
  • 1  tsp almond extract
Mix together ingredients to get a thick, construction-grade icing.  Set aside about 1/2 cup in a separate bowl.

2. Decoration-Grade Icing

Add in a couple tsp of water to get to your standard cake/cookie decoration consistency.  Set aside half of the mixture in a separate bowl.

3.  Coating-Grade Icing

Add a couple more tsp of water until what is left is akin to heavy paint.

Step 6: Form and Bake


The snowman stands proudly at over 8" tall (not including his hat) and since solid dough balls of that size would be weird to bake, he is made from cookie spheres in order to reach that height.  This also keeps him more edible and cuts down on costs (coconut flour is pricey!). 

I rolled out the dough to 1/4", cut out circles to match three tiny prep bowls of decreasing size (3 1/2", 2 3/4", 2 1/4"), and lined them with the dough.  The fact that the bowls are not completely round on the bottom make for super-easy-to-stack snowballs!

Bake (in bowls) at 350oF for 10-12 minutes.

The other advantage of making hollow spheres is that the cooking time remains the same as for boring, old, flat cookies.

(This was done in two rounds since I just have one set of bowls)

Step 7: Snowballs


Here's the first use of the Construction Icing.  Dip or brush icing around the edges of one of each size circle.  Line up each with its corresponding half and add a little Decoration Icing to fill in the gaps if needed.  Let them sit for 10 minutes or so to harden up a bit.


Step 8: Roll!


Put on your gloves and roll each ball in the Coating Icing and them immediately into a mound of shredded coconut.

Step 9: Snowflakes


And if you want accompanying snowflakes, or just yummy coconut cookies without the whole snowman thing, just roll out dough, cut out snowflakes and bake as in Step 6.

Decorate when cooled...dip top in the Coating Icing and then in sugar, or pipe on patterns with Decoration Icing (or both!).

Step 10: Assemble


When you know where your snowman if going to hang out, place a dollop of Construction-grade icing on the spot and stick the largest ball to it.  Add the next two also using the super-thick icing.  And then again for the hat.

Dip one side of the buttons, eyed, arms and nose in the Decoration-grade icing and stick in place.

Surround with shredded coconut and other cookies!

Comments

author
AMAZONIAbydjljwilliams (author)2012-01-10

Oooo..love the idea of the hollow cookie rounds!
Would totally be wanting to fill up with..something..Nutella, or something yummy.
Do the cookies not collapse while cooking, or did you cook them in the bowls?
I'm already looking online for these miniature bowls! lol
Did you consider using other gluten free flours in this instead of the plain flour? Maybe a mix of coconut flour, and rice flour and a 1/4 tsp of guar guar gum, or xanthum gum would make the dough hold its sugar cookieness?

author

Glad you asked! I updated to point out to bake cookies in the bowls. They have the bowls at Williams Sonoma (the three smallest in their ten bowl set), but I'm sure there are equally good, but more cheaply priced ones out there.

Since I haven't worked with coconut or rice flour much, I went for a coconut/standard flour blend, but I would like to try out rice flour as well!

If you do try out a gluten-free, Nutella-filled version, definitely post a link to it here too : )

author

I will do that!

author
bajablue (author)2012-01-10

SO creative... almost too cute to eat! ;-D

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