Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Cookie Time

I love to bake, and at Christmas I give away a LOT of cookies. I don't have a big shopping list for gifts, but I make up for it with the cookie list.

I like doing it. My Mother used to bake dozens upon dozens of cookies, and assemble the most wonderful platters of cookies and deliver them throughout our little town. I remember her making up the plates and using pretty ribbons, bows, and decorations on them. Then we'd load them into the station wagon, and visiting all our friends and family to drop them off. The mailman got a plate, both paperboys, the milk man (HA! Remember the milkman?), the guys at the garage, the gas station man, everybody. It was cool. Her mother did it too, but on a little smaller scale. When she got up in years, she did bake lots and lots of cookies for the kids, and the neighbors, but it wasn't quite the production like my Mom did.

Now, the cookie torch (theres a mental image) has been handed off to me, and I bake for the masses. The Dollar Stores have become a huge help in the big cookie picture. They have very festive holiday plates and wraps and bows. I'm not as big on presentation as my Mom, but I suppose it's a necessary evil in the process.

I've also found a store that sells bulk baking supplies. It's run by the Amish, about 20 miles from my house, and is simply called The Dutch Store. They are loaded with every kind of baking need your little heart desires, from those crazy silver beebees (technically known as Dragees..thank you Martha) to black as night dark cocoa powder. Milk chocolate, dark chocolate, and white chocolate especially made for melting/tempering for candy making. Huge tubs of any sort of sprinkles. 6 kinds of flour, every nut imaginable...well, I'll stop there. It's a great place. They aren't cheap, but it's all about the quality, baby.

I'm going there Saturday. Armed with my list and checkbook, I'm going for it. I might even try my hand at some candy making this year. Nothing I ever really tried (much) before, but how hard is it to make chocolate dipped preztel rods and peppermint bark?

Seems like I have my work cut out for me. I've got the list of cookies to make, I've got (most) of the list of ingredients needed. I've got the list of cookie receivers. For the first time, I'm SHIPPING cookies. Hopefully theres a learning curve with that. If I can send glass dishes across the country without incident, I believe I can manage cookies. Bubble wrap is my friend.

Stay tuned. Right now the only thing between me and Cookie Greatness is the fact I cannot get my gotdamned pantry door opened to get my mixer out. Grrr. Blasted independent woman. Hey Handyman, if you're reading this, give a sista a hand will ya? I'll make it worth your while!

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