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Science Fair at Cookie School

There ought to be a 12 step program for what is wrong with me! All I set out to do was bake cookies. So, how did I get here, trying to build a brand and endorse this product over that one? I'll tell you how. I got people. Smart People. People who are willing to tell me what I ought to do without regard to all my personal limitations. I guess that comes with the territory. My brilliant idea to train up my girlfriends so I would have a troop of volunteers to help me during my busy season somehow gave birth to the opportunity of meeting some of the nicest people ever standing in my kitchen baking cookies. If you like to bake, I am probably going to like you. So cookies have facilitated meeting some really nice teachers, and principals, and nurses, and accountants, and grandmothers, and room moms, and event planners, and marketing executives, and coffee shop owners, and dentists, and firemen and cops and bosses!

So these way-smarter-than-me-people have convinced me that The Cookie School is totally a thing. In fact, it is a brand. And when it becomes a brand, you have to decide to endorse what works best rather than my normal way of selecting (what is the cheapest!). And can I just say that fueled by the energy of some bakers who felt like they won the lottery when they got in to the school that is harder to matriculate than Harvard, I am easily led into temptation. For the past week, I have attempted to choose a new baking stone. Yes, I still LOVE the Pampered Chef stone, but they are not crazy about me. Go figure. And since I have a couple of advanced degrees, I know how to use Google, so I commenced googling up everything I never wanted to know about stone bakeware in the first place. I have now ordered up every baking stone in the country and started a downright science fair project. (An DANG that is expensive!) I have my control group and then all these others. Using the same dough, in the same ovens on the same temperature I have been baking cookies on everything from 24" floor tiles to gourmet versatile ceramic, stick resistant, microwave and dishwasher safe, natural clay baking stones produced in the heartland of America.

The ceramic floor tiles just had to be tried. Bad idea. That is all I am gonna say about that. But dang it would have been a great, economical solution had it worked!

Then there were stones that were designed for pizza. They surely appreciated the extra butter from the cookies because they soaked it right up. And dripped it right through.

Then there was a cookie baking stone that I seasoned with butter before giving it one run of cookies and it did not drip through and bring the firetrucks to my driveway but I am not putting any more on it because it obviously can't handle it. But after last week the firetruck option is not an entirely bad thing to have happen.

Then there was one that was larger so I liked its size but it is significantly heavier. It took several recipes without any dripping but I noticed oil puddling on the top of the surface after removing it from the oven. Not sure what that is all about.

I had great hopes for the ones that look and feel like my previously favored stone but it did not work. How can two things look so much alike and be so different?

Then there was one produced by American Steelworks. Doesn't that name just scream red, white and blue? Then the box arrived, it said that American Steelworks is produced. IN CHINA. I can't win. I am still waiting on delivery of a couple more before my final verdict but I do have a favored front runner. I am not telling what it is right now or I might jinx it. But stay tuned. I have no intention of purchasing a tri-fold board and adhesive letters but I will share the results when I finally drop anchor on "The Cookie School" baking stone. And if there is currently no recovery group meeting weekly to hold each other accountable for indulging a passion for therapeutic baking, (PTB Anonymous) I can start one. Who's in?


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