Amber Comments: I am posting Apri’s Lofthouse cookies a day early just in case you’d like to make these for your Valentine. They are so perfect and whip up easy for a last minute treat for the people you love….

This weekend I was blessed to have one of my grandchildren with me for the whole weekend! Isaac, my 7 year old grandson, loves to cook. He especially likes to make cookies! His mother isn’t feeling well, so he wanted to make her some special cookies to make her feel better and as he said…”because I love her so much and she’s the best!”

Isaac and his Mom

I asked him what kind of cookies he wanted to make, and he wanted cookies with frosting. He is apparently a pro at sprinkles.

We decided we would make those soft cookies that you see in the bakery at the supermarket–the “lofthouse” cookies. They are soft and have a thick layer of icing on the top, and are perfect with a hot cup of coffee or tea, although Isaac said to tell you that they are delicious with milk.
Those lofthouse cookies look good in the package, but I have always come away feeling like they had a funny after taste to them. They definitely don’t taste homemade! So if you like lofthouse cookies, but want to go a step better and have them taste deliciously homemade with a rich vanilla flavor, then these cookies are for you! We just call them Iced Vanilla cookies at our house…but you will call them delicious!

Before you start, let me show you a tool I use in my kitchen nearly on a daily basis! It’s a cookie scoop! This one holds a tablespoon, but they come in different sizes. For these cookies, I scooped out two scoops of dough to make each cookie! If you don’t have one of these, you should pick one up! I love that cookies come out the same size, and you don’t have to use your finger to push cookie dough out of it like you would a spoon. It’s also a perfect tool to make meatballs uniformly, but that’s for another day….

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You will need:
4-1/2 cups of all purpose flour
1-1/2 TBSP baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1-1/2 cups of butter (let come to room temperature)
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 eggs
2 TBSP vanilla extract

For the icing:
5 cups of powdered sugar
1/3 cup melted (but not hot) butter
1 TBSP white vanilla extract
8 TBSP milk
food coloring

Preheat oven to 350F.
1. With a hand mixer or stand mixer, whip the butter and sugar together until fluffy.
2. Add the eggs and whip again, until light and fluffy.
3. Add the salt and baking powder, mix well.
4. Add the flour, and mix until evenly moistened.
5. Cover with saran wrap and chill for an hour in the refrigerator.
6. Using a cookie scoop (2 TBSP), put a scoop in your hand and roll in to a ball. Place on a greased cookie sheet, and press down lightly to make a thick “patty” shape. Place these 2-3 inches apart on the cookie sheet, because they spread out as they bake.

7. Bake for 11-12 minutes. Edges will be just starting to turn golden, and top of cookie may have some cracks in it, but the surface will be dry. The cookies will be puffy!

8. Allow to cool a few minutes before removing from the cookie sheet and placing on a cookie rack to cool.

9. Cool completely before icing.

1. Place the melted butter, powdered sugar, vanilla and milk in a medium sized bowl, and blend together well with a hand mixer. Blend until smooth. Use white vanilla so your icing will not be beige colored.
2. Add food coloring to achieve the depth of color you want. I prefer Wilton food coloring paste, available in the cake decorating section of your market.
3. Place a dollop of icing on the top of the cookie and spread with a small spatula. Keep the icing in a thick layer.
4. While the icing is wet, top with your decorative sprinkles!
5. Allow the iced cookies to sit on the cookie racks for 2 hours so the icing will crust over.

This recipe makes about 30 cookies, however the icing recipe will make 2 batches. You could make the icing and divide it in half, and make two different colors if you like!

Have a great week – April

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