Behold! the most delicous sugar free cookies in the world!
Now that I’m regularly whipping up ricotta cheese in my little kitchen - which btw, is the easiest thing in the world to do, I am compelled by frugal duty to followup with recipe ideas for this bounty of goodness. Woman cannot live by lasagna alone. I’d be about five feet around and a million pounds if I did - fresh home made ricotta in lasagna is to DIE for. (And living is so much more pleasant.)
fresh ricotta is a beautiful thing
With this much delicious ricotta, you’ve got to get creative unless you enjoy eating a lot of plain ricotta cheese (OH NO PLEASE, NOT THAT!). You see, home made ricotta cheese has no stabilizers so it must be used within a day or two otherwise it will go bad. And not in a good "cheesey" way.
Oh yes, you can eat it simply smeared on a piece of toasted bread with a little honey drizzled over it - unreal delicious. And today I experimented with a ricotta dough making rigatoni shapes with my extruder. Came out tasting too noodley. My pasta skills are weak.
Right now, my favorite recipe is ricotta cookies - no surprise there. Our family motto: mi vita loco cookie!, my life for the cookie!
In the past I wasn't able to make them often because ricotta is expensive and doesn't keep very well. Now I'm making them every couple of weeks. YAY.
lovely little almost cookies patiently waiting their turn in the oven. this batch has orange peel and a few chocolate chips pressed in to make my monkey man especially happy.
Easily enough, I could fill our life with ricotta cheesecakes and pound cakes – and don't get me wrong - they are a wondrous thing, but they’re big caloric things too, really, and should be served sparingly, on holidays or special occasions. I don't care who you are, who in their right mind could eat such richness regularly? Well, okay, I could, yes. But I know better. And so do my hidden fat pants, who would not be my secret friend any more.
Following my recipe as it is below will not bust anyone out of any pants, unless you eat all the cookies alone in one sitting.
And they are so good...I caution you, this could be a real possibility!
On the other hand, from the normal functional human being portion wise vantage point, they are not what one might call a “fat” cookie. Nor are they a “fat free” cookie to be eaten like a maniac. They are what you make of them.
And as your monkey friend and food enabler, I am providing you with the knowledge and technology to make this recipe precisely just so, however you desire your cookies to be. THEN you may dive in with gusto, guilt free commitment and fat pants be damned!
As with most cookies, they can be prepared entirely sugar free and nearly fat free: sugar free by eliminating the agave nectar and using only granulated pure Splenda (and not the Splenda blend). If you use fat free ricotta, Egg Beaters and “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” or canola oil instead of butter you’ll eliminate much of the fat. What's so special about this recipe is that you don't notice that they're made with Splenda or Egg Beaters. They're that good.
However I do advise against substituting the ricotta cheese. Ricotta is not cottage cheese, it’s not goat cheese or yogurt cheese or any other cheese. Ricotta is a unique ingredient. I just know someone is going to write and say "MONKEY...SEE? I USED ZERO FAT SOYCHEESE AND MY COOKIES ARE SO DELICIOUS AND SO MUCH BETTER FOR YOU, FAT STUPID MONKEY COW".
And I say, okay, knucklehead you win! But you are chomping on a soy cheese cookie. (ew) And I know and you know your cookies taste like SOY CHEESE cookies. (ew) Certainly not these stupdendous cookies I am offering my super secret recipe for (you numbnuts that I am casting my pearls before).
The heavenly lemon fragrance that fills the kitchen and luscious creamy flavor is as marvelous and unique as their chemistry. For immediately after adding flour you'll notice the dough is coming together differently and is so much softer, fluffier and more elastic than any other cookie dough.
The combined ingredients puff up when subjected to baking and take on a delicate pillowed texture. They are so delicious, so undiet-like and luxurious, that nomatter how many calories or grams of fat you make them with, it will be impossible to believe they haven't been sent by the devil to layer the world in trembling, gelatinous globules of flab.
see how they rise like tender little clouds ...ooooooooo
MONKEY'S FABULOSO AND PERFECT SUGAR FREE RICOTTA COOKIES
makes about 3 dozen large cookies
- Butter = 2 sticks / ½ lb pound
- Splenda granulated, 2 cups
- Agave Nectar a scant ¼ cup (or this measure in Splenda for zero sugar)
- Eggs, 2 whatever size you have lying around (unless you have pullet size eggss, then use more.)
- Ricotta, 3/4 to 1 lb
- Flour, 3 cups all purpose
- Salt, ¾ teaspoon
- Baking Powder 1 teaspoon
- Baking Soda, 1 teaspoon
- Juice and zest of one lemon
1. Preheat oven to 325F*
2. Cream butter and ricotta in a mixer. When it’s soft and fluffy
3. add lemon and splenda. Blend thoroughly, then
4. add flour mixture and slowly bring the dough together. THEN STOP. Do not overmix! If you do, you will end up with a tough cookie! Great for film noir. Not so great when you’re making a cookie, cookie.
5. Use a well greased or nonstick cookiesheet or cookie sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat and spoon the cookie dough on. I like to use a cookie scooper, then press and shape with dampened fingers. I keep a bowl of water nearby. This is a light, sticky dough.
6. ALSO: this is DELICIOUS dough. It will not be easy to not eat all the dough right out of the bowl before it’s baked.
7. Bake for 20 minutes, or until lightly browned. NOW you can eat.
* These cookies can scorch. So keep watch on your oven temp until you’ve worked with this recipe once or twice and are familiar with how your oven bakes them. I have an electric oven so I watch carefully. It's been my experience that electric ovens are hotter than gas ovens.
ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS AND IDEAS:
o citron or orange zest is perfect with lemon. try making these cookies with an orange or a lime.
o chocolate chips are always a welcome sight in any cookie. there are sugar free chips, but my preference for these are the tiny chips for this very light and delicate cookie.
o pignoli nuts, finely chopped macadamia mixed in or a sprinkling of shaved almonds on top is wonderful. I prefer delicately flavored nuts for this cookie, but you might want to try a sprinkling of finely chopped pistachios, pecans or walnuts
o sadly, their shelf life is short. sugar is a natural preservative, so no sugar means stale cookies very quickly and we can’t have that! Freeze what you can’t eat in a day or two.
o OR twice bake them. twice baked cookies are biscotti and biscotti are delicioso and have a longer shelf life. they won’t be pillowy soft, but they’ll still taste like piece of heaven.
take that! soy cheese cookie fascists!