Copycat Lofthouse Sugar Cookies, Copycat Oreos, Spinach Balls, Pizza Margherita, and Migraine Muffins…made with l♥ve by the Cookie Mama.

This week I once again returned to my favorite sweet treat ever…cookies.  My sweet Victoria has been begging me to buy “Lofthouse sugar cookies” for the past few weeks.  I always say no, as I wanted to try to make them at home.  I came across a copy cat recipe a few months ago, but hadn’t made them yet.  So to be true to my word, I decided to make them for her.  We love love love Lofthouse cookies in our family.  I am sure that almost everyone has eaten them before, even if you don’t know the name.  They are those super soft, frosted and sprinkled cookies, that are sold at the grocery store and fruit market.  They are really colorful and super delicious.  Every now and then, the kids convince me to pick up a package and then we splurge.  They only come in a 10 count, so the division isn’t exactly even.  Dan usually forfeits his share to the kids, and they happily take his cookies.

The other cookie recipe that I experimented with was another copy cat recipe.  The only other store-bought cookie that we enjoy in our family is Oreos.  Again, every now and then, the kids convince me to buy a package from the store.  I have a hard time buying store-bought cookies as they are super easy to make.  Additionally, when I make cookies at home, I can control the ingredients.  I use organic ingredients whenever possible, and I substitute healthier ingredients whenever I can.  For instance,  I use white whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour, adding fiber and some extra nutrition.  I use egg substitute instead of eggs, I usually cut the sugar required, and I use vegan butter/shortening instead of regular butter/shortening.  I know some people think all the substituting is silly as I am still feeding my family desserts.  I concede that bottom line we are still eating cookies, but they are definitely a healthier and cleaner cookie, and I am okay with that.  I am happy to report that my family LOVED the cookies.  Admittedly, they do not taste exactly like their store-bought counterparts, but they were delicious nonetheless. Here are the links to the recipes that I used:  http://www.justapinch.com/recipes/lofthouse-style-frosted-sugar-cookies.html?p=1

http://weelicious.com/2012/10/10/oreo-cookies-yes-you-can-make-them-at-home/

The next recipe I made this week was spinach balls.  I love love love spinach, and I love to cook with it.  I got this recipe from my mother-in-law years ago.  She has been making these for as long as I can remember, and when she makes them we eat them right up. Ryan of course doesn’t eat them, but the rest of us LOVE this recipe.  After the spinach balls are baked, they are good either warm or cold.  In fact, I have added them to salads, or just eaten them plain right from the fridge.  I always make extra of these as they don’t last long in our house.  This recipe is extremely versatile. For example, I usually add feta cheese or asiago cheese to the recipe, depending on what I have on hand.  Also, I usually make my own croutons so I use those instead of the prepackaged stuffing mix.  By making my own croutons, I can control the amount of salt added, as prepackaged stuffing can have a ton of sodium.  We usually substitute egg beaters for the eggs, and I use vegan butter.  Here is a link to a recipe that is similar to the one my mother-in-law gave me: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/spinach-balls/

Next, I made pizza margherita.  I recently purchased some pizza dough from Trader Joe’s, so I decided to try a new pizza recipe.  I usually make the same versions of pizza that my family enjoys.  Victoria and Dan like cheese and pineapple, or just plain cheese with feta.  I prefer cheese pizza with peppers, onions, feta, and banana pepper rings.  Also, if I happen to have it, I love veggie sausage on my pizza.  Anyway, because I always make the same kind of pizza, I wanted to change it up and try something new.  I had also picked up some marinated mozzarella at Trader Joe’s so I used that.  Pizza margherita is a pretty simple recipe.  Other than the dough, it has only three ingredients…fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil…that’s it.  Well it sounded good to me, and man oh man did it taste good.  My family LOVED this pizza.  In fact, the night I made it, I made a regular ol’ cheese pizza too, just in case.  Well Dan and Victoria loved the pizza margherita so much, that they ate that pizza first, and requested I make it again the next night.  I love to honor culinary requests, so of course, I obliged.  The only problem was that I forgot to take the pizza dough out of the freezer before I went to bed.  I remembered at lunchtime the next day.  I don’t prefer “Pillsbury pizza crusts”,  and we don’t really care for “Boboli” crusts either.  Additionally, unlike Trader Joe’s, the closest grocery store doesn’t carry refrigerated pre-made pizza dough, so I was kind of in a situation.  I decided to make my own pizza dough using my bread machine.  Back in the day, Dan used to make pizza dough in the bread machine all the time.  I, however, haven’t ever used the machine to make the dough.  I pulled out the instructions, added the ingredients, and set the machine.  What I didn’t do correctly was allot for time.  I inadvertently set the machine, and didn’t take into consideration the fact that I wouldn’t be home when the dough was done.  I called my good friend Sheila, aka Shirley, to ask her opinion.  She said that she thought the dough would be fine, because we were only talking about a lag of 15 minutes.   So as I left the house to pick up the kids from school, I grabbed the bread machine manual to read while I waited for them.  It was after I started reading the manual that I realized my HUGE mistake.  I accidentally set the machine for “French Bake” instead  of “French Dough.”   OH NO!!!  Yep, instead of making dough, I made some weird kind of bread.  Long story short, I had to scrap the crazy concoction.  It wasn’t good at all, as it was missing a few ingredients to actually become bread.  Much to my chagrin, I had to go pick up a “Pillsbury” crust anyway.  The second pizza margherita wasn’t as good as the first day, but if I had used a different crust it would have been great.  Here is link to a recipe for pizza margherita: http://theoccasionalrecipe.blogspot.com/2011/03/old-world-pizza-dough-pizza-margherita.html

The last recipe I experimented with was for migraine muffins.  It’s a weird name I know.  Here’s the story. I had jury duty last week.  Ewwww right?  Right.  I literally sat in a room full of people for 7 1/2 hours, and then I got to go home.  Don’t get me wrong, I loved the part where I got to go home.  What I hated was that I had to totally rearrange my life to sit in a room all day.  Anyway, whilst (there’s one of my favorite British words again ☺) I was sitting in the jury holding room, I got to see “The Doctors” on television.  It was an episode that examined home remedies and natural solutions to common health problems.  One of those problems was headaches.  We have a lot of headaches in our house, and I hate it.  Dan and Victoria suffer from migraines and have to take meds pretty regularly to cope.  When I saw this episode, I knew I’d make these muffins to try to help them.  The muffins contain pumpkin seeds and pumpkin puree which contain magnesium.  The muffins also contain chia seeds which are loaded with healthy Omega 3’s.  Both of these nutrients help to decrease inflammation, which in turn can lessen the occurrence of migraine headaches.  The thought is that by eating the muffins in the morning, migraines can hopefully be prevented throughout the day.  The jury is still out (HA… pun intended) on whether or not the muffins work as we haven’t eaten them first thing in the morning.  That said, they taste great.  I did make a substitution though.  I am all about food being healthy, but in my opinion, it must taste good too.  So in the attempt to make these muffins taste even better, I added a streusel topping.  I love love love a streusel topping so, I figured what the heck.  I am happy to report that these muffins are delicious.  I would definitely make them again.  Here is the link to the recipe that I used: http://www.thedoctorstv.com/main/content/migraine_muffin

Here is the recipe for the streusel topping that I used:

2/3 cup old-fashioned oats

1/4 cup firmly packed light/dark brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

2 tbsp butter/margarine, melted

**Mix all together and spoon over muffins before baking.

I hope you try the recipes, and I hope you like them as much as my family did.  Enjoy! ♥

Morning over the farm field behind our property

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About THE cookie mama

I am not professionally trained in any way shape or form, BUT I come from a long line of really great cooks. I learned mostly by watching my parents and grandparents, and then replicating what they did. I love love love to cook and bake, and I love to share what I make with "my people."
This entry was posted in Bread / Muffins, Chocolate, Cookies, Italian, Savory and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Copycat Lofthouse Sugar Cookies, Copycat Oreos, Spinach Balls, Pizza Margherita, and Migraine Muffins…made with l♥ve by the Cookie Mama.

  1. jen says:

    Thanks for not using the Marie
    part of the spinach balls !
    Char

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