Using shortening in this recipe instead of real butter makes the frosting much more stable and long-lasting for cookies that are going to sit out a while before consumption.
1 cup Butter-Flavored or Golden Crisco ( solid vegetable shortening )
4 cups powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 fluid ounces heavy cream
gel or paste food coloring (optional)
Cream shortening until fluffy. Add powdered sugar and continue creaming until well blended. Add salt, vanilla, and cream. Blend on low speed until moistened. Add additional cream a teaspoon at a time if necessary to achieve the right consistency. Beat at high speed until frosting is fluffy. If desired, divide frosting into several small bowls and stir in food coloring to create various colors of buttercream frosting.
For a pure white frosting, use white shortening and clear vanilla.
For a whiter colored frosting that uses real butter but still holds up well at room temperature, use 1/2 cup white shortening and 1/2 cup unsalted butter.
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