With the holidays hurtling toward us at an alarming rate, I'm all about any kitchen shortcut which will streamline my baking.
And I have come to the conclusion that crushing cookies for a pie crust takes up way too much time and energy.
But following my ice cream cone shipping experiment, I began to wonder: could I ship cookies to myself in the mail, and rely on the postal service to crush them for me? I mean, let's be honest: they're not necessarily known for their gentle handling of packages.
I'm aware that this might sound ridiculous to you.
I realize that you might be tempted to point out a fatal flaw in my thinking here: doesn't packing and sending cookies to yourself take just as long as crushing the darned things? And yes, you are correct. But my thought process was this: if this experiment worked, I could move into shipping large amounts of cookies through the USPS. If I were shipping five cookie crusts' worth at a time, paying a nominal fee for the USPS to crush them just by doing what they do...it seems like a small price to pay.
I realize too that you might be tempted to say something like "dudette, just get a food processor." Well, I will have you know that I own a food processor. It's just that this way seemed so much more like an adventure. You're not going to deny me a life filled with adventure and joy, are you?
So, moving past any nay-saying, let me tell you exactly how I went about my experiment.
Here's what I did.
- I grabbed a bag of Walkers mini scottie shortbread cookies. Walkers shortbread is one of my favorite cookies to use for a cookie crust. (Note: while I have been paid to do recipes for Walkers in the past, they didn't pay me to say that. It's the truth!).
- I poured the entire bag, which is usually a good amount for a pie crust, into a plastic freezer bag and forced out any extra air.
- Then I packed it in an envelope WITHOUT padding, so it could be pummeled and crushed by any and every element that came its way.
- To bring home the point that this was not a parcel to be handled gently, I helpfully labeled it (pictured below) and then popped it in the mailbox.
It arrived back to me two days later, and I was disheartened to see that the envelope still held a somewhat lumpy, dimensional shape.
When I opened the parcel, I saw that the cookies were slightly crumbly around the edges, but really not all that different from how I mailed them.
I was tempted to curse the post office for its ginger handling of the parcel. But I held myself back. RESTRAINT.
Oh well, I thought. That answers that: having the USPS crush my cookies for me is not going to be a viable option for streamlining my holiday baking.
But, I do feel like I got some important takeaways from the experiment:
- It made me laugh while I did it, and that's not for nothing.
- It did give me a head start with my cookie crushing, though it didn't finish the deed as I'd hoped.
- It made me realize that perhaps there is an aspect of reverse psychology at hand here. By labeling the parcel in such a way that implied I wanted it to be pummeled, injured, and generally not handled with care, I seem to have ensured that they did just the opposite: I imagine the postal employees cradling the parcel like a delicate flower.
So maybe, when you're shipping something fragile in the future, you should just label it "NOT FRAGILE IN THE LEAST" and it will arrive totally fine.
Hey, I can't say that for certain. But it's definitely food for thought.