So, pretty soon, I’ll be back home in The States for a few comedy shows. Whilst I’m there, slogging away and trying to be funny on purpose, I’m looking forward to indulging in several of the goodies that I miss from home. I’ll pick up some Entertainment Weeklys. I’ll go shopping at DSW. I might try to catch a WNBA game. And I’m definitely going to eat the shit out of some Pepperidge Farm cookies. Pepperidge Farm cookies are today’s great thing:
136: Pepperidge Farm Cookies
First of all, here is a pepperidge tree. I was unaware, until I started pecking away at this blog, that there WAS such a thing. I just thought Pepperidge was one of those made-up suburban compound words for the upper-middle class. Like Foxwoods Court, Gullview Ridge, or Whiteperson Park.
The company was founded by a lady, Margaret Rudkin (nee Fogarty) who was struggling to feed her son. He was sensitive to the processed bread that she was buying so she had to go the extra mile and make her own groceries. Jeez…even then we pumped our food full of crap. I wonder how violently his little body would have rejected Crunchberries cereal. She was born 2nd generation Irish in 1897 NYC. Whatta life! Turn of the century NYC is such a cool period of history. All stabby and sweaty and everybody got to ride horses… Too bad that the business wound up being so successful that she had to pick up and move the whole works to Connecticut. BOR-ING! Oh well.
Anyway, even though she had no business plan and didn’t have much experience in baking, it turned out she could crank out some tasty vittles. So good was her wholesome bread that people paid about twice as much for it as the mass-produced loaves. It just goes to show that sometimes you don’t need education or business sense, or maybe even any sense at all to become a success story in this world! Isn’t that right, Michelle Bachman ?
Her product line expanded to include the delicious cookies in bags that we all know and love after a trip to Europe introduced her to the delicate little biscuits that the likes of Belgians and Swiss folk were already enjoying. She felt that we didn’t have anything comparable in The States…you know…all we had were ungainly chocolate chip and thuggish oatmeal raisins.
Rudkin’s cookbook, chockablock with Pepperidge recipes, was the first cookbook ever to be a best-seller on the New York Times book list. The Margaret Rudkin Pepperidge Farm Cookbook, dating from 1963, is still for sale on Amazon, if you’re the adventurous sort who would like to try and recreate the magic in your own home. It’d be cool if someone pimpmysnacked a Gingerman cookie.
What I like about Pepperidge Farm cookies is that they are slightly fancier than your standard Pecan Sandies and Oreos. You know how I know they’re fancy? Because you don’t get that many of them in a bag. Also, they’re named after classy cities! You may have noticed that the cookies from the ‘distinctive’ line pretty much go all-posh Euro. In contrast, the big chocolate chip varieties are named after American yuppie habitats. Sausalito indeed.
Here in order of preference, is how I will eat them upon my arrival back in The States. Saving best for last, of course:
I only wish I had a hard-backed suitcase so that I could fill it to capacity with Pepperidge Farm cookies and ensure their safe passage back to the UK.