Yesterday was the first official day of winter break here in PDX; and I can honestly say that we spent it very leisurely. I am in a holiday mode as in relaxing mode so not in the mood for doing anything along the lines of the zoo, or OMSI. More like a leisurely walk up Mt. Tabor but - surprise surprise - neither of the girlies felt like walking up Mt. Tabor, not even the playground was enticing. Dang, and I thought it was such a fantastic idea. Instead of my stellar idea we drove downtown, met Ron for lunch at Potbelly (the girls order their sandwich without cheese and it is "safe) and afterwards I took the girls to the Pittock Mansion. Not sure what I was thinking as I still had hopes of taking a nice long walk and the walk around the mansion was just not enough; however we peeked through windows to see the beautifully dressed rooms, and enjoyed the view. Okay truth I enjoyed the truth and MiaRose kept saying "this is boring"….HA here you have the plain truth…she thought it was boring. Yup - and I could not entice either of them to hike down one of the fantastic trails. Our next stop - the Rose Garden playground; still fun for both girls and then I saw it. Yes the trail leading up to the Rose Garden and formed my "evil" plan…The girls played for a while and when they were ready to leave showed them the trail. Oh yes, it worked like a charm - Alena loves walking but MiaRose is not always a fan…but it worked. Yup, we took the trail to the Rose Garden and had fun even MiaRose….
Back home it was time to make our cookies to finish up the first day of winter break. This is my Mom's recipe the only change is that instead of butter we are using vegan butter to make it dairy free.
Vanilla Sugar Cookie Dough
- 1 stick Earth Balance (or other vegan margarine)
- 1 C sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 vanilla bean scraped out (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
- 3 C flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- Cream together margarine, with eggs, sugar and vanilla until well combined
- In a separate bowl combine flour with baking powder
- Slowly add flour to the margarine until everything comes together into a dough
- Divide dough into two parts and wrap each into plastic wrap. Place in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
To make the cut-outs
- Vanilla Sugar Cookie Dough
- 1 egg yolk plus 1 tsp of water mixed
- your favorite cut-out shapes
*** prehet oven to 375 F - line baking sheet with parchment paper ***
- Roll out the dough
- Cut out cookies and place them on the prepared baking sheet
- Brush egg yolk over each cookie; decorate them with sprinkles
- Bake for 8-10 minutes
The Linzer Cookies almost as easy - the only added step is to fill them
Linzer Vanilla Cookies
- Vanilla Sugar Cookie Dough
- 3 Tb your favorite jam - couple of drops of water
- 1 Tb powered sugar for garnish
*** Preheat oven to 375 F - Line baking sheet with parchment paper ***
- Roll out half of the dough and using a Linzer cookie cutter - leaving out the insert - cut out the bottom rounds. Place on a baking sheet and bake for about 8 - 10 minutes
- While the bottoms are baking cut out the tops by placing the cut-outs inside of the Linzer cookie cutter. Bake tops for about 8 - 10 minutes
- While the bottom and tops cool down, stir jam together with a drop or two of water.
- When cookies are cooled down spread a layer of jam on the bottom cookie then place the top on it.
- Once all cookies are assembled sprinkle with powdered sugar.