- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 Tbsp cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 8 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup firmly packed golden brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- 1 oz red food coloring
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 5 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
Preheat oven to 375°. Using a heart template cut out from card stock, trace evenly spaced hearts onto pieces of parchment lining 2 baking sheets. Place parchment on baking sheets so that side drawn on is facing down; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and brown sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in egg until incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl, as necessary. Blend in vanilla. With mixer on low speed, beat in about a third of dry ingredients, followed by half of buttermilk, beating each addition just until incorporated. Repeat so that buttermilk has been added and then mix in final third of dry ingredients. Do not overbeat. Blend in food coloring.
Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a large plain round tip. Pipe batter onto parchment paper using heart tracings as a guide. Bake 7-9 minutes or until the tops are set, rotating baking sheets halfway through. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheets at least 10 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack. Repeat with any remaining batter.
To make the cream cheese frosting, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment beat cream cheese and butter on medium-high speed until well combined and smooth, about 2-3 minutes. Mix in vanilla extract. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until totally incorporated, increase speed and then beat until smooth.
Flip 1 cookie of each pair over so that flat side is facing up.
Pipe frosting onto flat-sided cookie of each pair, leaving edges clear. Sandwich cookies together so flat sides are facing each other and press gently to help filling reach edges. To store, refrigerate in an airtight container.