If you search the world far and wide, you'll find no bigger chocolate chip cookie fan than me. As far as desserts go, I say cookies. As far as cookies go, I say chocolate chip. And, as far as chocolate chip cookies go, I'd always said classic Toll House, with a few slight modifications.
Until four years ago, when I discovered these.
I'm a regular crossword puzzle do-er, and am always learning more about the vocab and nuances and well, stock answers, of the medium. There are a few standard clues that tend to come up over and over again, "Peter Fonda 1997 role" (ULEE), "Sewing case" (ETUI), and what's probably the most occuring crossword fill of all time, ORE and its partner OREO. Look at all those vowels and the wonderful R.
So, of course, I get it, and then I'm craving Oreos for the next three days. (The only thing worse is DONUT.)
The stockings are hung, the plums are sugared, and you're well on your way to getting all those gifts wrapped. Now it's time for the real fun to begin, and by "real fun," I mean...cookies.
Of course, "Cookie recipes are just about infinite, because almost anything can be shaped into a circle and baked... But the basic cookie contains three key ingredients: butter, flour and sugar. That combination has not been bettered, and it can be varied in so many ways that, really, it’s the only recipe you need."
Somewhere between age eight and wherever you are now, classic gingerbread shapes no longer satisfied. Sure, they still taste delicious, but a human shaped cookie with a head, two arms, and two legs, and no pyrotechnics? Well, that's just boring.
From architecturally satisfying houses to human rights campaigns to Nazi re-creations (what?!), we love some gingerbread inventiveness.
There's no doubt that baked goods underwent a revolution in the first decade of the Twenty-First century. The 1980s and 90s gave us fashionable restaurant pastries with intricate sugar sculptures and artistic chocolate towers. But the last ten years saw a return to roots; the kind of baked goods your grandma would make, except executed much, much better.
The humble cupcake, saved from crusty dryness by whole new approaches, was certainly the darling of the aughts, but from the looks of things, the cookie is taking over.
Just look at these trendsetting sweets from Japan's Cookieboy.
A few weeks ago, the ManMade community rejoiced over the release of the Ninjabread Men cookie cutters from Fred Flare, which are still not available for purchase. So, industrious James Williamson, an electronics engineer living in Lancashire, UK, created his own, and is sharing his template with the world!
James' versions hinge around a acrylic template (he'll laser cut it for you for cost!), but you could easily print yours out onto paper.
If pushed to declare a gender-neutral food, I'd nominate the cookie. Free of stereotypes, affiliations, and boosting and infinitely adaptable color palette, the cookie belongs on everyone's plate, if they make it that long.
But, the cookie's adaptability also allows for some intense customization, particularly in the classic cutout. But the next time you check out the cookie cutter section, you'll find yourself swimming in the limited palette of teddy bears and Easter baskets. Cookie cutters should be available in as much diversity as men and women come - from powder puffs to power tools.
So, looks like we'll have to make our own. The Beat