I see a lot of places and hear a lot of things when I travel around Columbus delivering cookies. Since it’s the start of a new year, here are things I’ve heard in the past year. Many of them could probably be put in the FAQ…hmmm. I should update that. Anyway, here you go!
11 Things I’ve heard in 2011
1. Do you have to sift the dry ingredients?
You don’t *have* to, but why wouldn’t you? I mean, sure, throwing everything into the mixer might combine everything evenly. But wouldn’t it suck if you took a bite of a cookie, and got a big bite of baking soda? Have you ever brushed your teeth with baking soda? It’s kinda gross.
2. “Where did you buy these cookies?” or “So…who actually made these cookies?”
For some reason, people think I’m some cookie reseller: I buy some cookies in bulk somewhere, repackage them, then sell them. I mean, sure, I do that with my line of questionable energy bracelets*, but not for cookies. Mainly because the cookies I can buy in bulk from China take too long to get here. JUST KIDDING. I bake all the cookies. I mix all the dough. Hell, when I first started, I mixed all the dough by hand. A tip for mixing lots of dough by hand: get a really big/long spoonula (spoon spatula). The extra leverage you get from the long handle makes mixing easier. I’m sure I don’t have to explain T = r x F to you guys…
3. “How much are these cookies…? Damn! These BETTER be really GOOD!”
I’m sorry Rogue Bakery cookies aren’t 10 for $1. I wish they were, but they cost quite more than a dime to make. I mean, would it be cool if you could get them at Chips Ahoy! prices? Yeah, it would be pretty cool, and that would probably involve lots of cool factory automation. I like to watch “How It’s Made”; it’s always eye opening when you see modern food production. There are always lots of robots involved. But yeah, no robots here. *sigh*
I often hear this when selling cookies at a stand/booth at craft fairs and other shows. And to everyone who has said this, I’ve offered them their money back if they didn’t like the cookie. I haven’t had to give anyone their money back yet. But it could be because they don’t want me or anyone else around to know that they’re a douchebag.
This brings up another topic: “The Middle”. What am I referring to? Well, not the television show starring Cleveland-native/OSU alumni Patricia Heaton. I think this post on Facebook by Iron Chef/guy on The Chew/also Cleveland-native Michael Symon explains it well:
“i would never blame location on our failure…we failed the location..& learned some great lessons along the way..we shouldve done more with the party space, stuck to our original menu format, not worried about making everyone happy by dumbing things down & stayed out of what i call the “middle”..the “middle” just doesnt work for us..we cant make prices low enough to compete with the chains & wont lower our labor & food practices enough 2 make a profit..for the way we choose 2 run our company the “middle” is absolute death…”
He was writing that in regard to the recent closing of one of his restaurants in a Cleveland suburb. Everything he says, I kind of agree with. I mean, I think if I really could get cookies down to 10 for $1.00 AND keep the quality the same, I would. But the quality is why I make these. Because *I* wanted a good quality cookie available in Columbus. And I’m completely neurotic. Do you know that I hand chop individual bars of milk chocolate because I don’t like the quality and size of milk chocolate pieces that are available in bulk? It’s ridiculous! Every time I chop those chocolate bars, I think “WHY HASN’T ANYONE MADE THESE INTO PRE-FORMED CHUNKS IN THE SIZE THAT I NEED?!??” Then I cry in the corner. Tears, people. I cry tears, for your Milk Chocolate Chunk cookie. Think about that.
4. “Do you make White Chocolate Macadamia??”
5. “Why don’t you make White Chocolate Macadamia???”
Because I hate you.
6. “No, really. Why?”
I SAID I HATE YOU.
Ha, just kidding. I don’t hate you. But I do get that question a lot. I don’t know what it is. I mean, I used to eat those White Chocolate Macadamia cookies all the time. To me, it’s a “mall cookie”: a cookie that you would get when you were walking aimlessly in the mall with your parents when you were younger. You know, you’re walking along, then someone has the idea “Let’s get cookies from Super American Great Chip Cookie Bonanza!” or whatever the mall cookie purveyor was named at the time. And you’d get these huge cookies that were thin and warm, and not that good, really. But you’d eat it, because hey, it’s a cookie, and I can carry it while I look around Brookstone. I don’t know, maybe I will make White Chocolate Macadamia cookies someday. Maybe I’ll make one better than that. Who knows?
7. “Do you make whoopie pies?”
No. Wait…aren’t those cakes? I always considered whoopie pies more cake-like than cookie-like.
8. “You should sell cookie ice cream sandwiches.”
Yeah, that would be cool. Get it. Cool? Because it involves ice cream…? I am SO funny. I did sell cookie ice cream sandwiches at one point a couple years ago, but I was selling them at a table on location at a place. I have two problems with the cookie ice cream sandwiches. First off, it’s really hard to eat a cookie ice cream sandwich, because the cookies are thick, the ice cream is thick, and they are both frozen together. You have to unhinge your jaw to eat them, if you can even bite through two frozen cookies. Second, they melt. I sold these in Summer, and let me tell you, they turned into a big ol’ mess. I could probably sell them easily right now, since it’s winter. But do people want to eat ice cream sandwiches in Winter? I mean, I would, but I doubt anyone else would.
9. “Do you make cupcakes?”
Nope. But I DID make cupcakes. Once. It was when I was testing out this whole idea of “Would people like delivery of baked goods in Columbus?” I made cupcakes, got on the ol’ Twitter to see if anyone wanted them. No one really did. Or people did, but they weren’t around. And they didn’t want strangers leaving baked goods on their doorstep. I ended up giving them to my friend. They were really nice looking, came in a cute gable box. But yeah, no cupcake-making anymore. But it’s okay, because there are plenty of cupcake people in Columbus.
10. “Come on, you don’t make anything else besides cookies?”
Nope. Besides the one time cupcake thing, I did make a cake for my friend/designer Zheng, which he requested because he was giving it to a friend. Here’s a crappy pic!
At least there are some cookies on top of it, in the shape of the Twitter and Facebook logos. The recipient (Amanda, as you can see from my horribly piped letters) just earned a position as the head of social media at a local company, hence the cake, with logo cookies.
11. “I bet you eat a lot of cookies!”
Actually, I don’t. I hardly eat any cookies. I mean, I eat them to taste them, and make sure I didn’t mix up my salt and sugar [Does that actually happen, or is that some weird thing that possibly only happens on TV?], but for the most part, I just make them. You eat them. I’m just not much of a snacker. I’m more of a binge eater. Okay, not really. But I get on these kicks…and eat a lot of one thing. For instance, I am going to have chips and salsa for dinner. Second day in a row. I just can’t get enough. But I’m sure I’ll be sick of it in a day or so.
There you go. 11 things. If you have any questions, or if you would like to type in all caps and yell at me, I’d love to hear from you. OR, why don’t you tell me something I should eat in Columbus? Or where I can get a good cupcake? Or hot chocolate? Yeah, tell me stuff. Email me at email@example.com. I’m dead serious. I promise I’ll write you back, even if you yell in all caps.
* I don’t have a line of questionable energy bracelets. I mean, if you guys are really into that, that’s cool. I’m sure they work really well for you…put one on? Why are you pushing on my arm?? No, no, it’s okay, I don’t need to try one on…fine, I’ll put it on…it’s a little tight…okay, stop with the arm pushing already…well, I guess, yeah, you’re right, before I put the bracelet on, my arm moved, and with the bracelet on, it didn’t. I get it. I think…