I think I caused a rumble in the grocery store today. Let me start at the beginning: I’ve been baking Christmas cookies.
Okay, okay. I’ve been attempting to bake Christmas cookies. You’d think that a 28-year-old mother of three would be able to turn out some decent cookies–but you would be wrong. I. Can’t. Do. It. I follow the recipe exactly–viola! Burnt cookies. (Remember my ghetto biscotti? Had some this morning with my coffee.) I change a few things up–lower the oven temperature just a bit, cut back on the time–still, I get extra crispy cookies.
What the what.
I read somewhere that the secret to good cookies is real butter. I took Mia and Merrick to the store in search of just that. But when faced with my options–salted or unsalted butter–I froze. I was stumped. I’m no baking genius; how was I supposed to know what the difference was? So I found the nearest granny, who had a nice face and a cart full of baking necessities, and I politely said to her, “Excuse me, you look like you know what you’re doing. What kind of butter is best for cookies? Unsalted or salted?”
“Oh, definitely unsalted,” she said, and then walked off rudely without an explanation or a second look back. Biddy didn’t even compliment me on what cute snot-nosed kids I had.
Hmmm. Okay, unsalted. Makes sense. Kind of. Grannies know these things, so I grabbed some.
I pushed my cart 2 feet and another lady was in my face. “I’ve always used salted butter and my cookies turn out perfectly. There’s some on sale back over there.”
Okay, salted butter, then. On sale. Sweet. I turned around and hit the first granny in the buggy.
“Did she tell you something different than what I told you?” she asked, and she wasn’t smiling.
“Um…well, she…yeah, she did,” I admitted sheepishly.
“Unsalted butter is what you want,” said Granny #1.
“No, I think it depends on the cookie,” said a third lady.
“I used salted butter all the time and there’s no difference,” said Granny #2.
“Well, you don’t need salted butter if there’s salt somewhere else in the recipe,” huffs Granny #1.
All three of them turn to look at me, waiting to see what kind of butter I’m going to go with. Pressure makes me sweat. I grab them both. And then my phone rings (Thank you, Megan) and I left the old ladies in the dairy section while I got the hell on out of the grocery store with my 2 pounds of butter.
Before we left, I allowed Mia to pick out some crap cookies in a fancy little box from the “Sale!” part of the store, since I wasn’t sure how my cookies would turn out. Memo to me: Check cookies before eating next time to make sure they are, indeed, cookies, and not gourmet dog biscuits.
I could give the rest of them to Noah, but that dog has eaten enough crayons to poop candles for a month. Today I came home and he had gotten into our Christmas cards–which were on our (very tall) dining room table. I’m getting out the crate today and he’s going in. No more taking 20 minutes to dog-proof the house before I leave; he’s going in and I don’t care how much he pees all over himself just to spite me. I’m crating that little bastard.
Right after I burn some more cookies.