I have been wrong all these years. Stuck in my “I know my way around the kitchen, if and when I feel like it” world, thinking that I had mastered this simple little culinary chore.
What’s that S? What have you been doing wrong all these years?
Making crumbs, of course.
Come again, S?
All these years when I needed to make crumbs, on purpose – let’s say from graham crackers for a cheesecake crust, I just grabbed a ziplock bag and a rolling pin and rolled those crackers into crumbs. It works, it contains the mess. And in fact I can toss the bag in the trash and return the roller to its drawer without so much as wiping it clean – no need as it still is clean. Lickety split (yummy pun intended) – those crackers are crumbs.
I most often employed this so-simple-a-child-could-do-it (would-love-to-do-it) method for crumbling oyster crackers or saltines for my soup so they immediately turned the broth to mush and ratcheted up the comfort food quality of a bowl of soup to that of a bowl of pablum. Happy sigh!
But this week I learned that my tried and true method does not work for cookie crumbs. Specifically OREO cookie crumbs that I needed for this recipe to take a potluck:
(click image for recipe)
OREO cookie crumbs that are rolled over or smashed down tend to stick to the side of the bag. Yep, that's how the cookie crumbles - not! They are stubbornly glued there until pried loose with a spatula. Maybe it is the softness of the cookie outsides that cause this, or perhaps the sweet creme filling holds them tight. Either way, the crumbs are not at all crumby, pieces are entirely too large to form a smooth crust.
I was being foiled when I had no time to be foiled. So I thought – what would my mom do?
Voila! Pull out the potato masher and smash those cookies into crumbs. Works perfectly. Not as neat, but more effective. And delicious. The dessert was a big hit at the pot luck.
If you decide to try the recipe, I recommend using 1/3 more cookies for the crust and putting it into an 11 x 7 pan, because I had too much of the chocolate mousse layer to put in my square pan. And that just forced me to set that extra mousse aside to eat later. What a sweet shame that was!
When shopping for the OREO cookies, I also noticed that they have a new variation – Thins! They look to be thinner crispier cookies with less filling – I wonder if they would crush down to crumbs with a rolling pin? Well, no matter, because I still pine for the original chocolate sandwich cookie – HYDROX! But then I’m known to be stuck in my old-fashioned culinary ways.
Did you know that OREOs were actually based on Hydrox, that had been introduced first in 1908. When OREOs surpassed Hydrox in popularity, Hydrox was then thought to be the knockoff. They eventually were discontinued in 1999. That doesn’t seem fair. Except, when researching this post, I found out that, thanks to another Hydrox lover, Hydrox were reintroduced in September 2015. How’s that for a sweet ending!!
While I search around town to find a supermarket that stocks Hydrox, why don’t you pop around to Sian @FromHighInTheSky and friends to see if they have found themselves in any sticky situations.