May 24, 2011

Graduation Bears

I'm back (after a busy month of no blogging)! And I'm now officially a college graduate! I just graduated last Tuesday morning in the pouring rain... Seriously, it was the only rainy day of the week. What is up with that? Well, at least it was a super memorable experience.

Nonetheless, it's big milestones in life, like graduation, that make me realize just how quickly the years pass. To think, just four years ago I was still in high school with pretty much no idea how to bake. Now, four years later, after teaching myself to bake and realizing how awesome it is, here I am with my own baking blog. It's interesting to see just where life takes us. For my graduation, I decided that it'd be nice to bake a bunch of Cal themed cookies to pass out to friends at the reception. The key was that I didn't want the designs to be too complicated, so that it'd be easy to make them in bulk. In the end it all worked out, and I ended up with two designs: a blue and yellow Cal heart (much love for Berkeley) and graduation bears (Go Bears!).

Graduation Bear Cookies
sugar cookie dough
1-inch circle cookie cutter
rectangle cookie cutter (or a knife)
pearl milk tea straw
Roll out the sugar cookie dough to 1/4 inch thick between two sheets of plastic wrap. Use the circle cookie cutter to cut out circles for faces. Use the straw to cut out small circles for ears. To make the hat, use the circle cookie cutter to cut out a semicircle from a piece of dough, keep the outline portion of of the dough (not what was cut out). Next take a rectangle cookie cutter (or a knife) to cut out the semicircle outline. Then take the straw to cut out two ear holes from the cutout.

Piece the hat, two small circles, and one large circle together on a parchment lined baking sheet. Make sure that the pieces are well stuck together and try to smooth out the connecting areas so the lines aren't so apparent. Bake as indicated in the dough recipe and let cool completely before decorating.

Decorating Cookies
sugar cookie icing
orange food coloring
brown food coloring
yellow food coloring
black food coloring

Make the sugar cookie icing. Take some of it and mix in black food coloring. Then use it to fill in the hat area on the bear cookies as indicated above. To make peach food coloring, add a very small amount of orange and brown food coloring to the white icing. Use it to make a small oval in the middle of the bear face. When the hat is totally dry, make some yellow icing and use a toothpick to trace out a tassel on the bear over the hat and part of the face. Lastly use a toothpick to dot out eyes, the nose, and the mouth in black icing.

P.S. These would make great gifts for any recent Berkeley grads or new bears who will be attending Cal in the fall. And I'm sure this idea can also easily be adapted to fit another school's colors/mascot :).


  1. Congratulations! Makes me think of my graduation about a year ago... time passes so quickly, but when you look back at what you have achieved in let's say a year's time, it's amazing to look back and remember everything...
    Your cookies look delicious, by the way!

  2. so glad you're back on blogosphere and congrats on your graduation!

  3. congraduations! and i LOVE these cookies... i went to cal too, so GO (graduated) BEARS!

  4. You're a genius! I really love the design of the cookies. Congrats on your graduation!

  5. That's so cute. This made me especially happy today because I just finished my first year at Berkeley! I'll keep these in mind for when I graduate.

  6. Congrats! I spent a summer session in erkeley years ago and I loved it <3

  7. as a rising 2nd year, these cookies made me smile and think about my future as a cal alumni in only a few short years :D good luck with everything! i'm sure berkeley's prepared you well <3

  8. coffeerocketfairytale: Thank you! I totally agree. It's when I look back at things that I realize just how much has been done in so little time. Quite cool :).

    shaz: Thanks! I'm glad to be back and blogging.

    sarah: Thank you! It's awesome to see that there are fellow Cal alumni reading my blog.

    berrybasket: Hehe, thanks!

    Anonymous 1: Congrats on finishing your first year!

    A76: Thank you! I'm totally going to miss Berkeley when I leave.

    Anonymous 2: Thanks! Yup, it passes by a lot faster than you think. Good luck with the rest of your studies!

  9. Congrats! I wish these existed when I went there! So adorable. It takes me back. Wow now I feel old. Haha.

  10. wow! congratulations! way to celebrate graduation, these cookies are super cute! now what? grad school? work? (I'm a biochem grad student... I love to see what other scientists do after graduation, lol).

  11. Congratas on your great achievement, and welcome back! Your Cal bear cookies are darling!

  12. I saw these cookies on tastespotting and knew it was you! Congratulations on graduating and creating your own cookie baking style.

    Huge fan!

  13. they're so kawaiiii.
    and congrats on graduatingggggg!!

    :D :D :D
    2 more weeks for me!

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  15. Woohoo! Congratulations! Love, love, love your sweet, edible homage to our alma mater!

    Go Bears!
    Jenn/Rook No. 17

  16. Connie: Thanks!

    Adriana: Thank you! I'll be taking a year off to apply to medical school, maybe do some tutoring in that time to earn some money. I do find it interesting to know what other science majors do after graduating. Many of my bio major friends have either already found lab jobs and are already working, are going off to grad school, or, like me, are applying to med school this summer.

    Sue: Thanks! I'm excited to be back (lots and lots of baking projects waiting for me).

    Anonymous: Hehe, thanks! That's awesome that you recognized my cookies by picture alone :D.

    Tiffany: Thank you! Early congrats on graduation!!!

    Alia: Yay, thanks! Welcome to the blog. I will check yours out.

    Jenn: Thank you! And of course, GO BEARS!

    Sara & Eva: Thanks :)!

  17. HOLY MOLEYY!! SO CUTE! Congratulations Susan!!! Keep up the great work! :D

  18. Can I just say....FANTASTIC!!! Here in UK and loving ur work!! So glad I put in "Pot of gold rainbows" for my 6yr olds graduation from Rainbows (scout club) !! Well done on your creations and your a genius with cookie to see if I can buy in the England xxx Minnie

  19. Chocolatte: Thanks Joanna!

    Minnie: Thanks for the kind comment! Haha, maybe one day...