Saturday, December 24, 2011

Lofthouse-Style Sugar Cookies with Vanilla Buttercream


I have SO many recipes that I want to share with you! Seven, to be exact.

One has been in the works for over a week. It's okay to be impressed.

Two are dipped in chocolate.

Two require a candy thermometer. Totally not as scary as it sounds.

One is the embodiment of all my childhood hopes and dreams. Seriously.

Two have actual fruit in them. From the produce section... where there are vegetables. I don't know how this happened.

One is covered in a crumbly mixture of flour, butter, and brown sugar.

One is in the oven at this very moment!

And one is thick, impossibly soft, frosted sugar cookies.


Most of the people I've talked to aren't familiar with the Lofthouse brand name, but almost everyone knows what "those really soft frosted sugar cookies they sell in the grocery store bakery" are. Right? I know you know!

These cookies are exactly like those. Except they're homemade. And a thousandmillion times better.

I know it's Christmas Eve and I probably should have posted this a few days weeks ago... but that doesn't mean it's too late! You need something to do between opening presents and eating hickory honey ham tomorrow, right?

I thought so. Merry Christmas!


Lofthouse-Style Sugar Cookies
Adapted from Sing For Your Supper

4 & 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
4 & 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 & 1/2 cups butter, softened
1 & 1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons vanilla

Directions:

1. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter for about one minute at medium speed. With the mixer running, gradually add the sugar and cream for about one minute more. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each. Stir in the vanilla.

3. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients. Mix only until all of the flour is incorporated and the dough is uniform. Wrap the dough in plastic warp and chill for at least one hour.

4. When you are ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow it to thaw slightly--just enough that you can easily roll it out.

5. Working with half of the dough at a time, roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness on a lightly floured surface. Use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes and transfer them to the prepared baking sheets. Re-roll the dough as many times as needed.

6. Bake the cut-out cookies for 10-12 minutes or just until set. Be careful not to overbake! The cookies will likely not brown at all. Cool completely before frosting.

Vanilla Buttercream

1 cup butter
5 cups powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons milk
2 teaspoons vanilla

Directions: Combine the powdered sugar and salt in a medium bowl. In a separate small bowl, combine the milk and vanilla. Cream the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer for about one minute at medium speed. Reduce the speed to low and add the powdered sugar about 1/2 cup at a time. Once all of the sugar is incorporated, add the milk and vanilla. Increase the speed to medium and beat for about two minutes or until the frosting is light and fluffy.

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