Every year, the Accidental Locavore and her friend Laura get together to make edible Christmas gifts. We try to balance it, one year something sweet, the next a savory treat. Somehow it seems the savory ones are always easier to make than the sweets. Possibly because neither one of us is much of a baker (and truthfully, Laura doesn’t really like chocolate but I forgive her. It’s the blue cheese distaste that’s more disturbing) and maybe it’s because you have to follow directions.
No matter the reasons, this year it was time to bake. For possibly the first time in our cooking history, we decided to make cookies. While the Locavore is pretty fearless in the kitchen, something about baking cookies intimidates me. Maybe it’s because there are a lot of people out there who make really good cookies or maybe it’s because my mother never made cookies successfully. Even my grandmother, who could make a killer pie crust and great brownies, didn’t go down the cookie road. What sparked this was an interesting recipe on the Serious Eats site for thin mints (think Girl Scouts) and that’s what we were going to do. Then, just days before the designated weekend, another recipe popped up for the cutest cookies, that looked like mice, so we decided to add them to the mix.
Normally, when we do one of these cooking get-togethers, we plan to spend a Saturday crafting, cooking and packing, with time for brunch and sometimes even a movie. Not this time! We worked hard for two days straight. Day one: make and bake. Day two was all about decorating the mice and chocolate coating the (not so very) thin mints. If you’ve ever seen the Wallace & Grommet movies, especially “A Grand Day Out”, the one where they go to the moon to find cheese, you’ll start to understand what my dining room table looked like Saturday night. Two hundred fifty (blind) mice in formation, covering the surface, That’s five hundred carefully selected (and extraordinarily fragile) slivered almond ears, the same five hundred chocolate eyes and two hundred fifty licorice tails that had to be inserted in very hot, just-baked cookies, a process you had to see to believe!
The verdict? My husband thinks the cookies are delicious and has eaten all of the rejects, carefully leaving the licorice tails behind. Friends have told us we should go into commercial production. Our verdict? OMG, never again!