What a magical time I had with my daughter this winter break. Now with her busy college schedule, it seems like we never talk. So when she flew back from New York for the holidays, I made her promise to save some time for us. To start the day off right we baked sugar cookies together. YUM. Then we stepped out for some local adventure.
I’m always thinking about simple but cute ideas for the next holiday. What could be easier than sugar cookies colored and cut for Valentine’s Day, no frosting required? Here’s a little tip: use gloves when coloring the dough so it won’t stain your hands.
After baking and filling our bellies with warm cookies, we decided to get some fresh air. We’ve been hearing about this secret labyrinth in San Francisco near Land’s End and figured it was time we found it. I’ve also heard it called The Cat’s Eye. It is a bit of a hike, and the trails are unmarked. Of course the weather that day was freezing cold and Jewels had on only a skirt and a skimpy sweater. Finally, after a few wrong turns, we happened upon the neatly placed rocks.
Nestled on a dramatic outcropping with sweeping views of the Golden Gate Bridge, the Marin Headlands, and out to sea, the labyrinth’s location is naturally both peaceful and majestic. The labyrinth is not officially endorsed by the Land’s End National Park area, and visitors be warned: the cliff side location can be windy and slippery. I won’t tell you the exact location, finding it is half the fun
Next stop, Braid Bar with Jordan Ferney of the Oh Happy Day blog, in the Mission area. I read she was being sponsored by BING to host an event at her studio, so I signed us up. She is one of the top bloggers in the country and I wanted to check her out! We both learned how to braid into an up-do, something Juliana already knew how to do, but she loved the setting and the swag bag of goodies. To top it off they had mini cupcakes and drinks:)
Holiday Sugar Cookies
Ingredients3 c unbleached, all-purpose flour 1/4 teaspoon salt 2 tsp baking powder 1 c granulated sugar 2 sticks (unsalted) butter, cold 1 egg 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
good quality food coloring
Preheat oven to 350.
Combine by sifting the flour, salt, and baking powder, in a medium bowl then set aside. Cream the sugar and butter in a stand up mixer on medium speed . Add the egg and vanilla and mix on slow speed. Gradually add the flour mixture and mix just until combined, scraping down the bowl, especially the bottom.
Knead the dough together with your hands as you scoop it out of the bowl.
Divide up the dough to add coloring and mix well. (this is where you want to put on those gloves)
Roll out dough on lightly floured board and cut out the cookies.
Place cookies on a baking sheet and put in the oven for about 8 to 10 minutes. Check frequently all ovens are different. Remove just before they start to turn golden brown.
DO NOT OVER BAKE!