Thursday, December 4, 2008

A Cookie Class!

Last month or so I got an email from somebody in the school district announcing the annual Holiday Cookie Class. Hmmmm, sounds very appealing. December 8th, 3:30-6:30 pm, at Independence High School. Learn from an accomplished baker and take home 14 dozen cookies for 55 bucks. I immediately asked my mom if she wanted to go, but she works till 6 every Thursday. Boo. I just didn't want to go by myself, so I just set my hope of going on a faraway shelf.

About a week ago, one of the secretaries in the attendance office asked if I had heard about it. Ummm, yeah. She asked if I wanted to go with her! YAY! I talked to Glenn and wrote my check and sent it through interoffice mail. Hooray. December 4th is now here and I am excited. I even get to leave work 30 minutes early. The tentative list of cookies we will be making is as follows: Blackberry and Oatmeal Bar Cookie; Chewy Ginger Cookies; Dark Chocolate and Mint Crackle Cookies; Spritz Cookies; Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies; Mocha Double Chocolate Chip Cookies; Key Lime Holiday Cookies; Styx and Stones; Chocolate and Mint Bark; Peanut Brittle; Peanut Butter Balls; South of the Border Balls; Rum Balls; Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Wow! That's a lot. Granted a good portion of those aren't technically cookies, it is sure to be a fun class. I will update later with photos and a class recap.

*** Update *** I'm truly sorry to report that the class was a HUGE disappointment to me.

Let's start off with the good. It was very well organized, with the mise en place already taken care of for each recipe. We were given the complete recipe book ahead of time. We got to bring home a ton of cookies at the end of the time. We started relatively close to the start time.

Now for the bad (it's a long list) the recipes were left in huge quantities and not reduced down to normal production sizes. I mean, who has the means and space to make 30 dozen cookies at home?!?! The class size was too large. With so many people there, a lot of people were stuck "assisting" like I was, opening bags and scooping out jars. Seems a bit silly to me. The chef only read the recipes to everyone in the very beginning and said go. Excuse me? Shouldn't you be sharing techniques and tips with us? I can read very well thank you. Half of the recipes were no-bakes. I came to the class to make cookies, not stir a bowl of stuff and then stick it on a pan. There is no talent or technique to be found in making a no bake cookie. We took lots of stuff home, but most of it was no good. Let me break it down for you:
Blackberry and Oatmeal Bar Cookie - they were well done and baked well, but a little plain in flavor. The group that did these did a good job
Chewy Ginger Cookies - these were overbaked, causing the molasses to take on a weird smokey/burnt flavor, overall not bad, but definitely not very good.
Dark Chocolate and Mint Crackle Cookies - certainly the prettiest of the bunch. I noticed it was a difficult dough to work with, but the ladies did a nice job. There's fresh mint in them.
Spritz Cookies - Cute to look at, but boring in flavor and a bit on the dry side.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies - done well, but the recipe is for a cookie that is way too cakey for my liking. I preferred the ones I made for Thanksgiving.
Mocha Double Chocolate Chip Cookies - I hate coffee and won't try these, but they are completely flat and a few are overbaked. They seem fairly plain though.
Key Lime Holiday Cookies - Glenn says they were made of zorbees. I said it was like a sahara desert in my mouth. The lime flavor is nowhere to be found.
Styx and Stones -the ONE cookie I made. A no bake. It was too sticky and never set up properly. Taste wise it is decent, but nothing special.
Chocolate and Mint Bark - A definite favorite. Out of all the stuff that was made, Glenn requested I get rid of everything but leave the bark at home. I'm working on it.
Peanut Brittle - they did a good job with this one. It doesnt stick to your teeth, but the flavor is lacking. It's a bit plain.
Peanut Butter Balls - SALTY.
South of the Border Balls - poorly written recipe. The lady I helped with this was so frustrated because she did everything right, but the recipe was mush. She couldn't roll it in to proper balls. It's a coffee flavor, but too heavy. Glenn had one last night and spit it out. He got an upset stomach from sampling.
Rum Balls - Done well, but I don't like the taste.
Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies - another no-bake. Weird gummy texture because of the melted marshmallow.

I am very sorry that I just lined someone's pockets with my 55 hard earned dollars. The class was a waste of my money. Instead of giving all of this to my neighb0rs for our yearly holiday treat plates, I brought these to school in hopes that I could get rid of it all. I didn't learn anything. I didn't bring home any useful recipes that I don't have to breakdown into tenths. I was totally looking forward to this class, but was very let down.

Glenn says I should just do my own next year. Have a cupcake class. I think that is a good idea, but I'm afraid I am not a very good teacher. I'm trying to set a cupcake party up with my mom, maybe I can practice there.



What's for Supper? said...

That sounds like a lot of fun!

Me! said...

That's so sad.... that's one of the reasons I have been hesitant to sign up for an expensive cooking class. I've been looking at one on pastries done by professionals but it's $150 for a 6 hour class and I am afraid it'll suck and I'll be out $150. Of course it could be amazing too so who knows.

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