For the cookies:
- 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup applesauce
- 1 cup vegan sugar
- 1/4 cup vegan butter
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 Ener-G eggs
- 1 and 1/2 cups vegan powdered sugar, divided
- 3 tablespoons plain non-dairy milk, divided
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
2. Meanwhile, let the applesauce stand in a fine-mesh sieve for 15 minutes - doing so drains off the extra liquid that would otherwise make the batter too runny.
3. Place the drained applesauce in the bowl of a stand mixer, along with the sugar and butter; beat at medium speed for about 2 minutes, until blended. Add the vanilla extract and Ener-G eggs; beat until combined. Add the flour mixture and beat until blended.
4. Drop the dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto 2 baking sheets lined with parchment paper, 12 cookies per sheet - make sure to space the cookies about 2 inches apart so they have room to spread as they bake.
5. Bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes - the cookies should be just set, but not browned. Cool on the baking sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.
6. To make the white frosting, whisk together 3/4 cup powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon of the milk, and the almond extract in a bowl, stirring until smooth. Working with 1 cookie at a time, hold over the bowl and spread 1 teaspoon white frosting on half of the cookie, scraping the excess frosting from the edges. Repeat with the remaining cookies, and let stand for about 10 minutes until the frosting is set.
7. To make the black frosting, combine the remaining 3/4 cup powdered sugar and the cocoa. Gradually add the remaining 2 tablespoons milk, whisking until smooth. Working with 1 cookie at a time, hold over the bowl and spread 1 teaspoon chocolate frosting over the other half of the cookie, scraping the excess frosting from the edges. Repeat with the remaining cookies, and let stand for another 10 minutes, until the frosting is set.
A couple tips on the frosting: it is definitely helpful to sift the powdered sugar, for the smoothest consistency. Because of the different amounts of liquid, I found the white frosting to be just a tad too thick - it was a race against time to frost all 24 cookies before the mixture set - and the black frosting to be just a tad too watery. As a result, you might try using a middle amount - say 1 and 1/2 tablespoons - of non-dairy milk for each version.
24 servings (1 cookie), Calories 106
These were incredible. The cookie itself is so cake-like that it was almost like eating a thin, moist, chewy piece of frosted cake, instead of a cookie. The chocolate half instantly brought me back to chocolate-frosted birthday cakes of my youth. The almond was an unexpected jolt of flavor on the white side, but also yummy. And a bite down the middle with both frostings was just delicious.