Monday, August 14, 2006

Chocolate and other essentials

Dutch chocolate spoiled us. Since the melting point of chocolate is 99 degrees and the average daily temperature is 104 degrees, most chocolate sold here has melted, resolidified, and melted again several times. You can get some refrigerated. Cadbury is especially vigilant about keeping theirs refrigerated all the time—the Cadbury trucks you see around town are always refrigerator trucks—but Cadbury chocolate is pretty nasty if you’re used to Belgian or Dutch chocolate. We’re all going through withdrawals but doing what we can to cope.

Chocolate chip cookies are our main strategy. We’ve been eating store-bought chocolate chip cookies. We can buy Maryland (!) brand cookies which, to my delight, are not made with hydrogenated oil, so we’ve been regularly popping those.

Still, there’s nothing like homemade chocolate chip cookies. For family home evening, Ruth decided to make us a batch of mint chocolate chocolate chip cookies from Mollie Katzen’s Still Life with Menu. She and I went through the ingredient list and made our shopping list. Of course, you can’t buy chocolate chips here, but she found a couple bars of Swiss chocolate that she chopped up to replace them. And you can’t buy vanilla extract, but we did find vanilla sugar. Flour was easy.

And the last thing on our list was butter. That’s where we ran into problems. We have bought butter twice—there’s one kind and it’s in the freezer section—but when I searched, it wasn’t there. The clerk told me they’re all out. So Ruth made a trip to the other grocery store in our neighborhood. They didn’t have any either! We thought about buying a tub of “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” we found up on a high shelf in the corner of the refrigerated section of the store, but it was ten dollars, and we decided we didn’t want it that much. So Ruth scrounged all of the leftover butter we had at home and added a bit of oil to what was missing. It was a winning formula—the cookies were delicious.

Can you make cookies with ghee?

5 comments:

Captain Piggy said...

Ed again.

I really really like those Maryland cookies with a cup
of milk. I do.

CuracaoChick said...

Mmm. Cookies.
It's good to know that wherever you are, and whatever resources you have, you can always find a way to make some cookies.

Love you guys.

Aish

Coleen said...

I'm impressed at your ability to improvise. I'm also gald to know that I'm not the only one who loves chocolate chip cookies. They're my favorite.

Nathan said...

I have this theory about a year supply of food. I figure while everyone else hoards flour, sugar, wheat, and water, I'm going to corner the market on chocolate chips. That way I can barter for whatever I want. The wheat guy will likely give me a ton of wheat for 1 pound of chocolate chip cookies. When I was a missionary in Spain, the going rate for a cold can of root beer was 2 suits, a suitcase, and a train ticket to Sevilla. That's a pretty good return on your investment.

Nathan said...

I have this theory about a year supply of food. I figure while everyone else hoards flour, sugar, wheat, and water, I'm going to corner the market on chocolate chips. That way I can barter for whatever I want. The wheat guy will likely give me a ton of wheat for 1 pound of chocolate chip cookies. When I was a missionary in Spain, the going rate for a cold can of root beer was 2 suits, a suitcase, and a train ticket to Sevilla. That's a pretty good return on your investment.