What a treat! We’d like to introduce you to local mom of two adorable children and mompreneur, Hillary. Inspired by two years spent abroad in Barcelona, Hillary started up her own business, Sugar Hill by Hillary, in February of 2017. She’s been serving up incredible treats one cookie cake, brownie and bar order at a time! Spoiler alert: she’s even given Chicago North Shore Moms a recipe of her household favorite: Best Ever Butterscotch Blondies (💛recipe below💛)!
Where are you from originally and how long have you lived in town?
I was born and raised here in Riverwoods.
Child(ren) and Age(s)?
My son is 7 and my daughter just turned 4.
Favorite things to do with your children?
I love exploring Chicago’s museums! Our favorite museums to take the kids are Shedd Aquarium, Kohl Children’s Museum, and in the summer Millennium Park to splash in the water. We also love to travel with them so they can see new places. My favorite trip we took with our kids was Buenos Aires. My husband is from there originally so we went to visit his family and it was amazing! We also love Puerto Vallarta and that is our go-to vacation when we want a beach getaway! Last but certainly not the least, I love just being at home playing and relaxing and of course baking with them!
Oooo, lucky kids! What do they like to bake with you?
My kids love to bake with me; it doesn’t even matter what I am making. They love to taste and smell the ingredients, help measure and watch everything come together. I think their favorites are cookies and brownies but they also love frosting, they ask for it by the spoonful! We bake together a lot especially into the winter months as a fun indoor activity. They love to frost and decorate cookies. Its fun for me to be able to teach them how yummy treats are created. Our household favorite is Best Ever Butterscotch Blondies (💛recipe below💛)!
One thing people would be surprised to know about you…
At age 30, I quit my job running the pastry kitchen at a large Chicago restaurant and traveled to Barcelona to be re-inspired by the food and culture there. A three-month trip ultimately turned into an adventure of living abroad. I lived in Barcelona for just under 2 years and traveled to Nice, Menton, Monte Carlo and many surrounding cities near Barcelona. I met my husband there and we moved back to Chicago together 2 years later.
Wow, amazing path your life has taken! What is your favorite Spanish dish?
My favorite Spanish dish is the fresh calamari and shrimp at the sea port. It was literally caught that morning and so fresh! I also loved the Catalan tradition of rubbing toasted bread with fresh garlic and tomato. I loved to sprinkle it with Spanish olive oil and sea salt!
Anyone special you’d like to thank for helping you through parenthood?
My parents live 5 minutes from us and they have been the most amazing supporters. I also have amazing friends who share the joys and laughter of parenthood. I feel very lucky to have my parents so close. They stop by to help whenever we need them, babysit quite a bit and help with my kids drop off and pick up while I’m working.
Are you involved in a business venture, a local organization, a creative endeavor, or in the corporate world? Please share!
After almost 15 years working in restaurant kitchens I knew after having children I was ready for a change. I’ve always been very driven to be a business owner and I recently started Sugar Hill by Hillary. I do pastry catering for many different outlets including Mitzvah and Wedding sweet tables, corporate catering, birthday cakes, healthy alternative desserts and custom orders in which I work with my clients to create whatever they are looking for.
Awesome and yummy! What is your most popular request?
My most popular request is for birthdays; cookie cakes and mini cupcakes. I also get a lot of requests for peanut butter and chocolate desserts which I love because that is my absolute favorite combination!
How has the North Shore community been instrumental in getting you to where you are now?
I love that the north shore community recognizes a good thing when they see it, or in my case when they taste it, and world spreads pretty quickly around town. It is a very small community in which so many people know one another. When my family moved back to Deerfield from the City two years ago, I started running into people I grew up with and slowly meeting more and more local moms. When I started Sugar Hill by Hillary these were the people who supported me, spread the word about my business and really helped it take off. I’m busier than ever and I’m thrilled!
💛Best Ever Butterscotch Blondies💛
2 cups brown sugar loosely packed (I use 1 1/2 cups light brown + 1/2 cup dark brown)
1 cup unsalted butter (melted)
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Mist a 9×9-inch baking pan with non-stick spray, and line it with parchment paper. Place the brown sugar, butter (melted), eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl and whisk until smooth. Fold in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in chips/nuts (if using), and transfer the batter to the prepared baking pan, smoothing it in an even layer. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until set around the edges but still soft towards the center. Cool completely and cut into squares.
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