Sweet Potato Gingerbread Girls with Vanilla Bean Linen Aprons
Author: Guava Rose
Prep time: 40 mins
Cook time: 24 mins
Total time: 1 hour 4 mins
Soft gingerbread cookies lightened up with mashed sweet potatoes, topped with sweet aprons made of cream cheese frosting flecked with vanilla bean.
  • ¾ c. melted butter
  • ¾ c. brown sugar
  • ⅔ c. cooked sweet potatoes pureed with ⅓ c. water
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅔ c. molasses
  • 4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 4 tsp. ginger
  • 1 tsp. allspice
  • ½ tsp. cloves
  • 2 c. whole wheat pastry flour
  • 3-1/2 c. unbleached flour (plus extra for rolling out dough)
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
Linen Frosting:
  • ¼ c. salted butter, softened
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 2 c. powdered sugar
  • 1 T. vanilla bean paste
  1. Cream butter, sugar and sweet potatoes. Add eggs, molasses, and spices, mixing in well.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together both flours and baking soda. Gradually blend into the wet mixture until the dough is smooth. Chill for at least 2 hours.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease baking sheets.
  4. Dust a rolling pin and rolling mat lightly with extra unbleached flour. Roll out ¼th of the dough at a time to a ¼" thickness. Use a 3-1/2" to 4" gingerbread man cutter to cut out cookies and place on baking sheets.
  5. Bake for about 10 minutes until barely cooked. They should look slightly underbaked. Do not overbake. Let cool slightly (~30 seconds), then loosen cookies from baking sheets and place on racks to cool completely.
  1. Cream butter and cream cheese in a standing mixer on high. Add sugar and vanilla bean paste. Mix on low for a minute, then turn up to medium until sugar is incorporated. Finally mix at high speed for 1 minute.
  2. Scoop into a pastry bag with tip, or a large ziplock bag with one bottom corner snipped off. Squeeze frosting aprons onto cookies by first outlining the neckline and skirt edges, then squeezing the frosting up and down across the cookie to make the skirt.
  3. Store in airtight containers. Refrigerate if not eaten right away, or any leftovers.
  4. (The frosting will smear if the cookies are stacked on top of each other. To avoid this, chill the frosted cookies in a single layer until the aprons are firm. Now they may be gently stacked with waxed paper between layers, in airtight containers and stored in the refrigerator.)
Recipe by Guava Rose at http://www.guavarose.com/2013/10/sweet-potato-gingerbread-girls-with-vanilla-bean-linen-aprons/