nationalNational Bakery has become one of my favorites in Milwaukee. In addition to bakery treats, they also sell deli meats and sandwiches. They have three locations in Milwaukee, but I always visit their 16th Street store. Every time I’ve been here, it’s been a pleasant experience because I think they have the nicest staff of any business in Milwaukee. Seriously. Here are more thoughts!

  • Their seasonal sugar cookies are really tasty – and some have the old school air-brushed designs!
  • So. Many. Pastries. You name it, they sell it — donuts, danish, coffee cakes, tarts, tortes, muffins, etc.
  • They also have plenty of pre-packaged cakes, cupcakes, and other treats — in case you need to pop in and grab some treats for a party or event.
  • There’s a nice parking lot next to the building, as well as plenty of street parking.

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DSC_4131x900These cookies, or some version of them, have become my go-to recipe. I make these for my friends at school quite a bit because they always disappear within hours, which I take a sign of their deliciousness. The cookies are HUGE and you can make modifications to the original recipe to put a different twist on them. The original recipe involves a hint of cinnamon and a variety of chocolate chips. I changed these up a bit :) Enjoy!

Butterscotch Chocolate Star Cookies
Recipe modified from Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice
Print Recipe

4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, softened
1-1/4 cups granulated sugar
1-1/4 cups packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup chocolate stars
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup butterscotch chips
Plus extra chocolate stars for the top of each cookie

1. Preheat oven to 375° F. Line 2 cookie sheets with silpats or parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. In a large separate bowl beat butter with both sugars together on low until creamy about 1 minute. Beat in eggs and vanilla extract.
4. Gradually beat in flour mixture 1/4 at a time. Stir in all the chocolate chips.
5. Drop dough by level 1/4 cups 2 – 3 inches apart onto the baking sheets. [I used an ice cream scoop for this – it worked great!] Place 3 or 4 chocolate stars on the top of each scoop of dough [this is optional, but it makes the cookies look prettier when they come out of the oven]
6. Bake for 12 – 14 minutes or until light golden brown around the edges. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Store in tightly covered containers in a cool, dry place up to 5 days. Makes about 24 large cookies.

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DSC_4968x900Happy Milwaukee Day! April 14th is Milwaukee Day because 4/14 = 414, which is Milwaukee’s area code. The Milwaukee Day concept is relatively new, but it’s gaining momentum and there are countless promotions, deals, and ideas floating around social media to celebrate our city. I have less than a month left in Milwaukee, a city that I have come to adore. Milwaukee isn’t perfect — it is rough around the edges, but also filled with charm, vibrancy, and amazing food. Aside from law school, I’ve loved my three years here and will be genuinely sad to leave.

I wrote myself a little list of Milwaukee places that I must try before I move away. Grebe’s Bakery was on that list. I drove there a few weeks ago to try some of their treats!

  • Those sprinkled donuts in the photo above? Amaaaaaazing. But then again, I’ve never met a donut that I haven’t liked.
  • I tried a frosted Easter sugar cookie, which was also great. The frosting was delicious — and this is coming from a girl who could do without frosting.
  • Those cake pops though? Blech! They were cracked and dried out, sadly. But this just confirms my ongoing thought that cake pops are generally pointless and are rarely good.
  • Grebe’s is located on the south side of Milwaukee. They have a nice parking lot (yay!) and an awesome retro sign.
  • Grebe’s also serves hot food, but I didn’t give any of it a try so I can’t comment. The place smelled of donuts and ham though, so there’s something for everyone at Grebe’s!

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  • Susan B - April 15, 2015 - 9:21 am

    I’m sure you’ll be happy to be out of school, but I for one will miss your Milwaukee posts- I grew up in the area, and get very nostalgic with some of your bakery visits. Grebe’s is definitely an institution!ReplyCancel

  • Annie - April 15, 2015 - 9:22 am

    Aww, thank you Susan! I will miss Milwaukee so much!ReplyCancel

DSC_4536x900My momma’s 65th birthday is on Saturday (heyy, Medicare and senior discounts!). I adore my mom and will openly admit that she is my soulmate. My mom loves crossword puzzles, daffodils, Civil War trivia, iced tea with LOTS OF ICE, coffee with LOTS OF CREAMER, NFL football, her iPad, using emojis in her communications with me (which warms my heart), the color yellow, Snoopy, country music, and lemon bars. She really loves lemon bars.

So what better treat to make for her big day? I found this recipe on Pinterest, which was originally named “Sunburst Lemon Bars.” I changed it up because sunshine is a cuter word — and my mom is the sunshine of my life.

Sunshine Lemon Bars
Recipe source: So, How’s It Taste?
Print Recipe

Crust
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1 tsp. grated lemon peel

Filling
4 eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. grated lemon peel

Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
2 to 3 tablespoons lemon juice

Note: you’ll need about 2 lemons for all the juice + peel necessary.

1. Heat oven to 350F. In large bowl with electric mixer, beat flour, sugar, butter, and peel on low speed until crumbly. Press mixture evenly in bottom of 13×9-inch pan (I sprayed my pan with Pam nonstick spray). Bake 20 to 30 minutes or until light golden brown.
2. Meanwhile, in large bowl with wire whisk, lightly beat eggs. Beat in remaining filling ingredients except lemon juice and lemon peel until well blended. Beat in 1/4 cup lemon juice and peel.
3. Remove partially baked base from oven. Pour filling evenly over warm base.
4. Return to oven; bake 25 to 30 minutes longer or until top is light golden brown. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
5. In small bowl, mix 1 cup powdered sugar and enough lemon juice for desired spreading consistency until smooth. Spread glaze over cooled bars. Cut into bars. Store in refrigerator, but allow bars to come to almost room temperature before serving.

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It’s opening day for the Brewers today! And the Badgers are playing in the championship game against Duke tonight! BIG DAY for Wisconsin sports. I don’t have a recipe to share today, but here are some cute treats I made. I hope you’re all having a great Monday (and recovering from your chocolate bunny food hangovers!).

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