To prevent my cookie habit putting undue strain on the food budget, I started baking my own. And once I discovered that the number of cups of chocolate chips called for in any recipe is merely a conservative (of the non-political variety) suggestion, I was in cookie heaven.
But I needed new baking sheets because the ones we have all bake at a different rate so it’s 11 minutes on this tray or 13 minutes on that tray, and if you use them both at once an advanced degree in thermodynamics is required to figure out when and for how long each tray should be put in the oven so that all the cookies come out that perfect brown colour, crunchy on the outside with a soft, mushy inside.
So today I bought my new baking sheets. You know the kind - stamped metal, 12” X 20” or so, raised lip to keep the cookies from sliding off prematurely. They came with instructions. Detailed instructions. I’m not sure why we need instructions. I mean, they are cookie sheets. You put raw cookie dough on them, slide them in the oven, and then remove the tray of baked cookies after 12 minutes or so. But someone (or more probably, some LAWYER) decided that these baking sheets required instructions, which leads me to believe that it’s time we took some of those tax dollars out of law schools and put them back where they belong, in High School Home Ec classes.
Anyway, once I got through reading the instructions (some men do, you know) I came to this warning. “Failure to follow these instructions can result in personal injury or property damage.” (“If you’re going to have instructions you’d better make sure they are followed” – another LAWYER.)
Personal injury? From a cookie sheet? Only if the spousal unit uses it to brain me after I take the last cookie out of the tin. (She too has a cookie problem, albeit not as serious.)
And property damage? There are no moving parts. It’s not flammable. Highly unlikely to explode. Not brittle. Unless I break the coffee table when falling after being brained – see above - what possible property damage could be done by a cookie sheet?
So now I’m worried because since I have been blissfully unaware of the potential lethality of these benign-looking baking tools, what else have I been missing that could, with extreme prejudice, prematurely terminate my cookie habit? Perhaps I’ll just go have a few cookies while I ponder that question and this one: How much chocolate in a chocolate chip cookie is too much?