I made these little beauties for a neighborhood BBQ on the 4th of July. When Michael and I walked up the driveway carrying pans filled with these everyone's eye got big, there were gasps of excitement, and I heard a few "oohs" and "ahhs"! I always love that reaction.
The inspiration came partly from the fact that my friend Camille and her cute boyfriend, late one night, brought us a couple slices from a fruit pizza they had made. It was darn good. I haven't made one in so long that I knew I just had to whenever I got the chance. The other source of inspiration was, of course, from numerous food blogs I read. It seems fruit pizzas have been on everybody's minds lately.
So, when the hubby and I were invited to a neighborhood BBQ for Independence Day, I knew immediately knew what I would bring! But not only were these going to be fruit pizzas, but they were going to be little star-shaped cookies shaped with only strawberries and blueberries on top (keeping in with the festive theme). My vision turned out pretty cute I'll say!
And these did not disappoint in the flavor category either. People kept coming back for more and before I knew it, the plates were empty. The son of our neighbors who hosted the party (who is about 18 months) kept making yummy noises when munching on the blueberries and cookie. Apparently blueberries are his favorite. I definitely couldn't have catered to the consumer better. :)
Anyway, I'll get to the recipe sharing, since that is really the purpose of this post, is it not?
Fruity Pizza Stars
(adapted from Our Best Bites)
Sugar Cookie Dough
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
Zest of 1 orange
- For the cookies, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy–about 2 minutes. Add in egg and extract and mix to incorporate. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt.
- Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix until completely combined. Add the orange zest and mix until combined.
- Wrap in cellophane and chill in the fridge for about an hour.
- When you're ready to roll out your dough, lightly sprinkle flour onto work surface and roll our dough with a rolling pin. Cut into desired shapes with cookie cutter (stars, for instance).
- Bake on a greased baking sheet at 350 degrees for 8-9 minutes. The key is to keep them soft and take them out before they brown on the edges.
- Remove from oven and cool on cooling rack until ready to add the topping.
1 8-oz. package cream cheese (light neufchatel is good too)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
- When the cookies are cooling, use an electric mixer to combine the cream cheese, vanilla extract, and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
- In a separate bowl, whip the cream and powdered sugar until medium peaks form. Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture and combine well.
- Spread the cream cheese mixture over the cooled crust.
1 pint strawberries, washed, hulled, sliced, and patted dry
1 pint blueberries, washed and patted dry
- Arrange the berries over the top of the cookies as desired.
- If desired, can add additional fruit (kiwi, bananas, or mandarin oranges), as seen below.
As you can see, I decorated some cookies with mandarin oranges that I had leftover from another recipe, just waiting to be used. What is great about this recipe is that is completely adaptable to whatever you have on hand and in whatever way you would like to use it. Side note: the creamy topping also make for a really yummy fruit dip, just set it on a platter with a bunch of different types of fruit and you're good to go.
The dough can be rolled out onto a pizza pan to make an authentic fruit pizza, and you can also add different extracts besides vanilla (like almond, orange, or maybe even mint...that sounds interesting)! What I like about the cookies with the mandarin oranges is that they turned out a bit Picasso-esque. Don't you agree? Many of them look like skewed versions of faces. So fun!