Monday, July 5

Independence celebrations

Happy Independence day (one day late)! This may seem a bit silly to say, but the third of July is my favorite day of the year. Yes, the third. This is simply because Milwaukee celebrates the fourth of July on the third of July. The day is idyllic really; thousands of families together at the lake, picnicking all day long to culminate the evening with a fine set of fireworks. Our family puts the boat in at the dock and I spend the day lounging on the water and seeing friends at the dock.

This year was no exception to the rule. It truly was an idyllic day at the lake. Perfect weather, friends and family, and a day of picnicking. This year however, had the best spread of food; everyone brought their best recipe. Our plates were adorned with curried lentils, grilled portobello mushrooms and homemade lemon cake. Perfect, really!

For my contribution, I made little star-shaped sugar cookies toped with homemade frosting and a blueberry! They were enjoyed by all (especially two-and-a-half year old, Vera, who enjoyed just the frosting and blueberries, leaving behind the cookies...). To prepare these star shaped delights, bake sugar cookies in the shape of a star and top with honey-cinnamon frosting or cherry frosting and a blueberry. I have included the recipes that I used for each part:
This sugar cookie recipe is from my More with Less cookbook.
Sugar Cookies
1 2/3 cups of sugar
1 cup of butter
2 eggs
1 cup of sour cream
2 teaspoons of baking powder
7 1/2 cups of flour
1 teaspoon of vanilla

1. Cream together the sugar, butter, eggs and sour cream. Then, blend in remaining ingredients.

2. Chill dough for at least 1 hour. Then roll dough out to about 1/4 of an inch thick. Using a star-shaped cookie cutter (or any shape really) cut out cookies and place on an ungreased cookie sheet.

3. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes at 375 degrees. Cool before frosting.

For the frosting, I made two different types of frosting and alternated. First, I used Martha Stewart's honey-cinnamon frosting recipe. This is my favorite frosting recipe at the moment. It is very tasty and very versatile! Then, for a festive pink frosting, I tweaked Martha's recipe for a cherry frosting. Here is my recipe for cherry frosting:

Cherry Frosting  
1/2 stick of butter
3/4 cup of powdered sugar
1 tablespoon of homemade cherry jelly

1. Blend all of the ingredients together, until thick and smooth.

2. Using a scraper or a spoon, put the frosting into a small sandwich baggie. Snip the corner of the bag and squeeze the frosting evenly onto each cookie. In the center of each frosting dollop, place a fresh blueberry.
Also a tip for easy storage and transportation: Place one layer of frosted cookies in a baking dish. Place two cookie cutters along-side the cookies and rest a piece of cardboard on top of the two cookie cutters. I used a piece of my cereal box, cut to the appropriate size. Then, lay another layer of cookies on the cardboard. The cookie cutters are just the right height to prevent the second layer from squishing the first layer. Result: plenty of perfect cookies, for all to enjoy! 

Happy eating!


  1. Is this Ali?
    this is Mai! i found your blog!!
    I miss American Independence day...and your family...

  2. Haa! MAI! This is Ali!

    I am so glad you found my blog. We miss you here in the US of A. I hope you had a great birthday.

    Email me at