Easy holiday baking | a few sweet tips and tricks from Hunter

Christmas is right around the corner. With less than a week left until the big holiday, we can practically hear the sleigh bells ringing. There’s a lively energy in the air, you feel it when you walk down the street in downtown Boone. With storefronts decorated and holiday lights twinkling, it really is the most wonderful time of the year. It’s been impossible to ignore all of the sweet treats and good cheer that have been coming through our office door this week. Well, especially the sweet treats. After all, it wouldn’t be Christmas without holiday baking! This inspired us to sit down with our Director of Food and Beverage, Hunter, and ask him a few questions about baking. Read on to learn a few sweet tips and tricks from Hunter for easy holiday baking. 

Hunter also shared one of his favorite Christmas cookie recipes with us! Click the link below and get the recipe delivered straight to your inbox… they’re sooooo good! 

Get the Recipe by clicking HERE!

Essential holiday baking supplies

Baking is a labor of love. It can take a lot of time, and it can feel like a lot of work. But with a little bit of planning and a well equipped kitchen, you’ll find yourself getting into the holiday spirit one batch of cookies at a time.

First things first, invest in a nice sheet pan.

Make sure it’s flat, with a raised edge to help hold things inside. That way you can rest assured your cookie dough won’t be melting off the pan and into your oven! Well, if you follow the cookie recipe we gave you, you won’t have to worry about that! Make sure your sheet pan is sturdy enough to bake everything from pastries to breads.

A quality whisk makes all the difference.

Be sure to purchase a whisk that is sturdy and durable. It should be able to handle everything from soft pancake batter to thick yeast dough.

Don’t forget the rolling pin!

It’s all about thickness with cookies, and you can’t achieve the perfect thickness without a rolling pin. Just about every shape, size, and type of rolling pin you can imagine exists. We recommend keeping it simple, and going with a sturdy wooden rolling pin. We prefer one with adjustable rings, so that you’re able to be precise when measuring out the thickness of your dough.

Last but not least, stock your pantry…

Tools aside, make sure you’re investing in high quality, organic, unbleached all purpose flour. Hunter: “If you can’t find unbleached flour, at least go with something organic… it makes all the difference in the world for the texture of baked goods.” He says: “When a recipe calls for butter, always use unsalted butter so that you can control the salt content of your baked goods. Always use natural, organic, and wholesome ingredients,” Hunter emphasizes, “just use the real thing and your baked goods will be consistent and delicious.”

Still not sold? Well, it just so happens that we have several local businesses in Boone, North Carolina where you can purchase all kinds of freshly baked holiday treats.

Bakeries in Boone, NC

Stick Boy

Stick Boy Bread Company in Boone, NC.

Think coconut cake, oatmeal brown sugar rolls, classic winter stollen, peppermint ganache bundt cake… and more! Please do yourself a sweet little favor and click the link above to check out their holiday specials.

App Cookie Co

Appalachia Cookie Company in Boone, NC.

Cookie delivery anyone? It doesn’t get much easier than this. These cookies are baked to order, and delivered warm. The molasses cookies won’t last long…

Local Lion

Local Lion Espresso Bar and Homemade Doughnuts in Boone, NC.

Okay, so you’re not going to find traditional Christmas cookies and cakes here. You will find some of the most amazing doughnuts in town though! Everything is made fresh daily, and they do an amazing job with seasonal specials. Grabbing a dozen is a quick and easy way to feed the family over the holidays.

Happy baking…

…and happy holidays from all of us at The Horton Hotel and Rooftop Lounge! If this post inspires you to bake or purchase something, make sure to post a photo on Instagram and give us a shout out @thehortonhotel. We plan on baking plenty of seasonal sweet treats in house, and we’ll also have Stick Boy bread available on our breakfast bar. We look forward to welcoming you into our space in the new year!

For more cooking tips, check out this blog post featuring Hunter’s favorite kitchen tools. For more holiday cheer, read our blog post about the Christmas tree industry in the high country!

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