Saturday, November 10, 2012

Cookies & Biscuits ~ Oreos & Digestives

I tell myself to stand in a corner before drafting a post with instructions to repeat 100 times: "I will not write about politics, I will not write about politics, I will not write about politics.................


Husband's son-in-law, in his weekly column in the newspaper he edits made mention, some weekends past, of Oreo cookies (biscuits to any passing British readers). I quote:
....A century ago a chocolate sandwich cookie was created that’s been a staple in my diet since childhood.
In 1912 in Manhattan, New York, the National Biscuit Co. made the first Oreo, and cookie monsters all over the planet are now snorking down about 25 billion of the habit-forming lil’ beggars a year.

There are two really cool things about Oreos:
1. They are addictive, but subtly so. Really. Think about how many times you’ve sat down with a package of Oreos and a glass of milk to watch a TV show or read the paper or play a video game. It’s almost a mystical moment when you look down and suddenly realize: Oh, I just ate a whole row!

2. Oreo eating is ritualistic and individualistic; there are a dozen methods of devouring the combo of chocolate wafer and white goop inside........ Of course, dunking an Oreo into whatever liquid is at hand is extremely popular.

I have my own, similar, longtime attachment to a biscuit (cookie to any passing US readers) - McVitie's Digestives and the de luxe version: Chocolate Digestives. McVitie Price, Scottish biscuit makers established in 1830, were originators of the Digestive, created by one Alexander Grant in 1892, and so named because it was thought that its high baking soda content served as an aid to food digestion. The biscuits are grainy, coarse textured, semi-sweet and crisp.
The choccy version, created in 1925, has one side of the biscuit coated with milk or plain chocolate. Wikipedia reports that "Over 71 million packets of McVitie's Chocolate Homewheat Digestives are eaten in the United Kingdom each year, giving an average of 52 biscuits per second."

The loss of Digestives was almost as devastating as the loss of Marks and Spencer incurred by my emigration across the pond. There are thousands of cookie varieties here, surely I could've found a substitute? No. I find American cookies far too sweet. But...last Christmas-time I spied some familiar red cartons on the cookie shelves of (sorry!) Walmart.....McVities' Digestives, both plain and chocolate!! I stocked up! We make a point of shopping mainly at the other supermarket in town, but I will enter Walmart's doors to re-stock Digestives occasionally, and in each town we visit when away from home, if we happen to wander into a Walmart to use the loos, I'll make a detour to check the cookie aisle for stray Digestives.

There aren't as many ways of eating Digestives as the son-in-law finds for devouring his Oreos. They can be eaten plain or spread with butter and/or cheese. Dunking (in a proper cup of tea, with milk, not lemon) has to be carried out very carefully, and preferably in stereo: two biscuits, undersides together, even then it's an art to retrieve them without losing a piece in the tea and having to fish it out, all very inelegant!

I will not write about politics....I will not write about politices....I will not write about politics...


Wisewebwoman said...

You can imagine my joy when my local shop started stocking HOBNOBS. Both plain and chocolate...OMFG.

No they don't have biscuits here, cookies is a good name for their over sugared crud.

Did you have Kimberleys in Yorkshire or were they just peculiar to Ireland?


♥ Sonny ♥ said...

sliding over to the Oreo side of the comment section..


mike said...

Well, Twilight, Oreos ARE like politics. They come in a pretty, sanitary package and look delicious until I bite into one...pure ersatz ingredients...cost too much for what they are and the company that makes them is a subsidiary of some mega-conglomerate...they give me indigestion...they leave me wanting for something real, except that the real biscuit is very hard to find.

Twilight said...

Wisewebwoman ~~ Hobnobs - I do remember them, but never retained a hankering for 'em.

I've never heard of Kimberleys, WWW - so they must be a purely Irish delicacy. I Googled - have to say, they sound a wee bit odd (but then that's the charm of all that's Irish). ;-)

Twilight said...

Sonny ~~ Enjoy - but don't spoil your dinner. ;-)

Twilight said...

mike ~~ LOL! Excellent analogy Mike - I'd never have seen that one without your pointing to it!
Let's do a wee extension then.....

They entice the trusting and unwary into becoming addicted to their doubtful but superficial charm.

R J Adams said...

Darn it! I was about to astonish you by writing: "Just look in Walmart!" ...but then read the rest of your post.
Oreos? Horrible, super-sweet, muck! At least, to our delicate British palettes. Sorry, Sonny.
McVitie's are great for munching on...while writing about politics!

Twilight said...

RJ Adams ~~~ Yes - our delicate palates have been highly refined by long years of copious fish & chips banquets with gallons of malt vinegar and lots of salt, also Cornish pasties and mushy peas, steak and kidney pudding, Welsh Rarebit, and a pint or two Boddington's best. ;-)

Oooh - I could murder a proper old-fashioned Welsh Rarebit....YUM! Toasted cheese sandwiches here are not even a travesty!

Chomp said...

The famous McVitie's - oh yeeesssss

Twilight said...

Chomp ~~ The original and always the best- yes! :-)