TRASH TALKING

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Momofuku Milk Bar Compost Cookies. Sometimes I can’t decide which photo to use, with or without props.

So I lied when I said I would stay away from the Milk Bar cookbook. Lindsey made the big mistake of leaving a jar full of peanut butter cups in plain sight, which are without question my biggest weakness when it comes to junk food. Many paper wrappers later, I felt ashamed of breaking the first rule of being a good roommate by totally pillaging her stuff. Guilt forced me to make apology cookies. 

At first I thought I would try Smitten Kitchen’s recent recipe for potato chip cookies, but then I remembered that there’s another, even more outrageious Tosi-endorsed cookie that totally owns the salty-sweet combo: the compost cookie. It’s basically an anything goes drop cookie that crams as many ingredients as possible into the starter dough. I cracked open that dangerous book and got those two sticks of butter ready for creaming. In addition to chips, these cookies have pretzels, chocolate, Heath bar bits, coffee, and pecans. I have a feeling that someone, somewhere, has already tried adding bacon and/or fried chicken skins to this mix.

*Heh, what if I made one of these with crushed up macarons, cupcake crumbs, pork belly, meyer lemon zest, and bone marrow and called it the “overkill cookie”…*

While these blobs were baking, I went through the part of the cookbook where Tosi lists her preferred brands for common Milk Bar ingredients. Apart from her preference for Valrohna chocolate and Plugra butter, she mostly uses the kind of classically American products found on regular supermarket stores: Domino sugar, Skippy peanut butter, General Mills flour, McCormick vanilla extract, etc. Given that the Momofuku brand is one of the most visible representations of what’s trendy in American food, I think this is a welcome sign that we’ve finally gotten over our inferiority complex towards French patisserie. Traditional American baking has finally made its way into haute cuisine. Good riddance to ultrafine caster sugar that leaks out of the bag and wildly expensive Tahitian vanilla beans. I wish I’d realized years ago that overpriced ingredients do not necessarily make for a better finished product.

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