Thursday, March 15, 2012

Leftover-Lofthouse Gooey Bars

Until yesterday, I'd never met a 'leftover' cookie. Any cookies that turn up in our house usually fulfill their delicious destiny pretty quickly. Occasionally, a handful will be saved 'for later,' and one or two might be set aside for a special occasion, but they pretty much always get eaten and they're never, ever 'leftover'...until yesterday.

You see, yesterday I bought my first package of Lofthouse sugar cookies. That's right, my first ever. The truth is, I like baking cookies so much that I almost never buy them. Of course, that doesn't mean that those pillowy sugar cookies, spread thickly with colorful icing have never piqued my interest. So, when I saw some that had been festively decked out for St. Patrick's Day, I snapped them right up.

I carried them home, all excited for the first bite...and I have to admit, it was a bit of a letdown. I'm sure I won't be popular for saying this - I know lots of you love, love, love them - but maybe Lofthouse cookies just aren't my thing? The flavor was nice - super-sweet and sugary - but I'm a gooey, chewy cookie girl and these cookies were just a little too cakey.

After I'd polished off the first one, I still had nine more cookies on my hands: my first ever leftover cookies. I suppose I could have left them all for Matt, but instead I racked my brain for a way to make them chewy, and came up with these gooey bars.

A thin sugar cookie base, covered with crumbled sugar cookies and topped with sweetened condensed milk (and an optional sprinkling of white chocolate chips). Can it get any sweeter? You can use pre-made sugar cookie dough for the base, or substitute your favorite recipe - it's really just a vehicle for the best part of these bars: the way the Lofthouse frosting crisps up during baking. A little goes a long way with these, though, so cut them up small!

Leftover Lofthouse Gooey Bars

For Crust:
1 cup flour
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup cold butter, in cubes
3-5 Tablespoons cold water
OR 1/2 package refrigerated cookie dough (if you use this, you can skip Step 1)

For Filling:
8-10 Lofthouse iced sugar cookies, crumbled
3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk, divided
1/4 cup white chocolate chips (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 8x8-inch square baking pan. In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour and powdered sugar. Cut butter cubes into the flour mixture using a fork or a pastry cutter (if you have a food processor, you can use that too!), until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add water 1 Tablespoon at a time, stirring until the mixture just comes together (I like to use my hands for this step - just make sure you don't overwork the dough).

2. Spread the dough evenly in the prepared baking pan. Bake until just golden, about 18-20 minutes. Remove and allow to cool.

3. Top crust with half of the crumbled cookies. Drizzle with 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk. Top with remaining cookies and drizzle with the remaining 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk. If desired, top with sprinkles and white chocolate chips. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the edges begin to turn golden. Allow to cool before serving. Cut into small squares - a little goes a long way!

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  1. These are great gooey bars for the celebration today, yummy! Hope you are having a great week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Happy St. Patrick's Day!
    Miz Helen

  2. Wow. YUM! There's never too much sugar in my book. And when in doubt, cut the sugar with chocolate. :)

  3. I admire you for trying new things!! I am more of a cookie girl than a cake girl too! Thanks for sharing at oopsey daisy!