I halved the recipe, it still made 78 cookies (less the dough I ate...) but I did use a small scoop (Pampered Chef). I followed the recipe exactly, other than this. NO, you don't make the pudding up into pudding - just add the powder (those whose cookies were runny, I am guessing this was your first mistake). Make sure you CREAM the butter (I did use non-hydrogenated margerine) and two sugars first, before you add the eggs. Follow the directions e.g. stir in the ingredients it says to, not beat in, do not over work. Do not over bake and I am sure you will get the nice, soft cookies the recipe says it will make. I baked them for about 15 minutes per sheet and used parchment paper. They are somewhat cakelike, I think this is the 'soft' part. All the negative comments seem to be the result of not doing what the recipe says or expecting something the recipe isn't. The cookies are very good. I might add a tsp of salt next time as they could use a little something, but otherwise don't change anything, except make a half-batch or you will be baking them all day. Also, I used my KitchenAide mixer - I find I get the fluffiest butter/sugar mix that way. As is important with all baking, make sure you use good quality, fresh ingredients (maybe the negative comments about the taste were related to poor pudding mix?)I used Jello brand, instant pudding.
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I halved the recipe, it still made 78 cookies (less the dough I ate...) but I did use a small...