Sunday, April 10, 2011

Lazy Sunday, Part 1: Girl Scout Cookies

The other day Jen and I were talking about how we didn't know any girl scouts. This was unfortunate because it meant we had no access to their cookies. Last year there was a troop of them who had set up shop outside our nearby train station learning the important art of how to be a shyster. This year they must have done new demographic research and found better areas in which to teach eight-year-olds how to sell snake oil to an unsuspecting public.

This got us to thinking: why not make our own girl scout cookies? It can't be that hard to do. And think of the savings!

Girl Scout Cookie Tip #1: It turns out that it costs approximately ten times as much money to make girl scout cookies from scratch.



We were able to track down a few recipes for the cookies online. Most of them start out with a basic shortbread as pictured here.



Cutting out the cookies is probably easier if you have an actual cookie cutter instead of using the screw cap from a spice container and a wine stopper.

Yesterday, while buying the necessary ingredients, we needed some peppermint oil to make the thin mints. We were sure we purchased it, but somehow when we got home it was not in our bag or on our receipt. I suspect it was overlooked during the forty-minute stay in the laundry detergent aisle to find the perfect scent. This meant I had to walk and drive all over town and go to four different stores to find someone that sold peppermint oil.

Girl Scout Cookie Tip #2: For best results start the baking process before 3:00 PM.



We made three types of cookies: Tagalongs, Samoas, and Thin Mints. All of them required being dipped in melted chocolate. I think it is safe to say that on an average day we keep a much larger supply of chocolate chips than your average folks. Generally we like to keep at least 3 full bags at all times just in case some sort of baking project may sneak up on us. Even so today's project completely cleaned us out.

Girl Scout Cookie Tip #3: Be prepared to use up hundreds of pounds of chocolate, most of which has dirtied just about every surface of your kitchen.





The recipes we made were a little too large. We ended up making over 100 cookies in the end. This became very challenging in that we started to run out of pans and tables to put them on. Since all of them have to be laid flat for the chocolate to set this means every available bit of workspace in your kitchen will be covered in messy, dripping, chocolate-coated cookies.

Girl Scout Cookie Tip #4: Consider renting a kitchen or buying an extra ten or twelve cookie sheets before attempting to make these cookies at home.





In the end, after several hours of baking, we had eaten enough scraps of shortbread cookies, chocolate, and caramel coconut mix, we weren't really in the mood to actually eat any of the cookies. Instead we just quickly made dinner and ignored the piles and piles of cooking chocolate-dipped cookies covering every available surface of our apartment.

Girl Scout Cookie Tip #5: Just buy some damn Girl Scout Cookies.

To be continued . . .

Recipes:

Tagalongs

Samoas

Thin Mints

2 comments:

Laura said...

But surely warm samoas fresh out of the oven are EVEN MORE DELICIOUS?

Nate said...

Well it's complicated. They are more delicious but you have to make the shortbread, cool them, then make the coconut mixture, top them, then dip them in chocolate and cool them again. So you don't really get that warm-out-of-the-oven effect like chocolate chip cookies.

Still quite tasty.