Low Fat Red Velvet Cake Sandwich Cookies 1 1/3 cups all purpose flour 2 tbsp cocoa powder 1 tsp baking powder 1/4 tsp baking soda 1/2 tsp salt 2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce 1 tbsp buttermilk 1 cup sugar 1/4 cup butter, room temperature 1 tsp vanilla extract 2 large egg whites 3/4 tsp red food coloring (more, if necessary)(gel preferred)
Preheat oven to 375F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt, then set aside. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy, then beat in the egg whites, followed by the applesauce, buttermilk, vanilla extract and red food coloring. Add additional coloring, if needed, to reach desired color. Keep in mind that the color will dim slightly with baking, but I try to shoot for a burgundy/brown color. Stir in flour mixture until batter is smooth and no streaks of flour remain. Drop batter two tablespoonfuls at a time onto the prepared baking sheet, forming 2-inch in diameter rounds. Bake for 10 minutes, until set but not browned. Cookies should spring back when lightly touched, like a cake. Allow to cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely
Makes about 40 cookies.
Crème Fraiche Cream Cheese Filling 8 oz crème fraiche cheese 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
4 oz unsalted butter, room temperature 2 T. vanilla extract (vanilla paste is even better)(or can use orange or raspberry liqueur) 1 ½ cups confectioner's sugar
Beat together butter and cream cheese until well combined. Add crème fraiche & continue to blend until smooth. Beat in vanilla.. Add in confectioners sugar, scraping down the bowl as you go. When it has all been incorporated, beat on high speed for 1-2 minutes, until icing is very smooth and thick, but not stiff. Add more confectioners sugar, if necessary. Spread filling between pairs of cooled cookies. Makes about 20 sandwich cookies.
To assemble red velvet trifle:
Break up cookies into 2 inch chunks and make one layer of them on the bottom of a wine glass. Top with layer of crème fraiche filling. Alternate with layers of fresh raspberries, pomegranate seeds, whipped cream, dashes of liqueur, jam or whatever things you desire – you can use shaved white chocolate, coconut, graham crackers, toasted hazelnuts or whatever you like. Finish with whipped cream and something colorful. Let set up in refrigerator for 2 hours, then enjoy with a loved one!!