Wednesday, December 28, 2005

One of the best investments I have made in a looooong time was a subscription to Cooking Light magazine. It is chock full of recipes that are so delicious, easy to make, and health concious. Adam and I have both resolved to eat healthier in the new year, and luckily I have found that this does NOT mean we have to stop eating what we love, including dessert (I am a big dessert fan!).

For instance, I found this incredible dessert recipe in last month's issue that incorprates two things i love: cookies and frosting. And it still comes in at under 200 calories a serving.

(Also: if you hate nuts feel free to leave them out. I did, and they were still fantastic!)

Maple-Walnut Spice Cookies

Store these frosted cookies between layers of parchment paper or wax paper to keep them from sticking together. You can bake and freeze the cookies up to a month in advance; bring the cookies to room temperature before frosting them.

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (about 6 3/4 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 large egg

1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon fat-free milk
2 teaspoons butter, softened

Remaining ingredient:1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts, toasted

Preheat oven to 350°.

To prepare cookies, lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 6 ingredients (through cloves) in a medium bowl, stirring well with a whisk.

Place brown sugar and 1/4 cup butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until light and fluffy (about 4 minutes). Add 2 tablespoons syrup and egg; beat until well blended. Beating at low speed, gradually add flour mixture; beat just until combined.

Spoon batter evenly into 30 mounds (about 1 tablespoon) 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 14 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on pans 5 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely on wire racks.

To prepare frosting, combine powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons syrup, milk, and 2 teaspoons butter, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Spread frosting evenly over cooled cookies. Working quickly, sprinkle cookies with nuts. Yield: 30 cookies (serving size: 2 cookies)

NUTRITION PER SERVINGCALORIES 196(30% from fat); FAT 3.3g (sat 1.1g,mono 1g,poly 1.1g); PROTEIN 1.2g; CHOLESTEROL 12mg; CALCIUM 12mg; SODIUM 58mg; FIBER 0.3g; IRON 0.5mg; CARBOHYDRATE 16.3g

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