This week Oscar is coming to town, blissfully squeezing Cupid out of the cookie rotation. From where you stand in front of the bakery counter waiting for your espresso, Oscar could be misconstrued as a sarcophagus. Seems to me it would help tremendously if he were outfitted in black tie. In addition to Oscar, we are featuring Breakfast Sugar Cookies iced to resemble bacon, eggs and toast. Unfortunately, the toast cookies are a touch too thin to stand alone. They sit ignored on sheet trays, the runts of the cookie litter.
The banter around the bench turns from what I dub "Free For All" cake orders, cakes free of anything tasty (dairy/egg/wheat/flavor) to the Oscars. We bakers are a pretty pathetic movie-going bunch. Most of us have seen nary a nominated film and the few who have (that would be me) are trying to have a discussion without plot oversharing with the as-yet-to-view crowd. We switch gears, talking Downton Abbey and Mary's new hair bob and perpetually miserable Edith until the other grown-up in the group starts chatting about Turner Classic Movies. It is currently TCM's 31 Days of Oscar. I step away briefly to answer the phone, counseling a customer who wants to buy a (this is a quote) "Healthy Pie for an individual with Health Issues." They're all healthy, I explain, in moderation. Healthy consumer grills me for a good while then opts instead for a gluten free item. No dough off my rolling pin, Madam, suit yourself.
When I return to the bench, the iconic film Ben Hur is mentioned as being TCM’s Tuesday night selection. There's a pause and to my horror I learn that several bandana’ed baristas and bakers have never seen the film. More troubling, a few have never heard of it! The conversation continues to plummet downhill at a furious pace. Next topic is the 40th Anniversary of Saturday Night Live. Aargh! When you work with twenty-somethings, it's best not to reminisce in their company. Any mention of the 70s and 80s stirs up derogatory comments about bad hair-dos and shoulder pads. I'd love to take these sassy comments and toss them into the Amazing Bassomatic. The crew is back to movie trivia, comparing the original Willy Wonka to the remake.
You know who could have taught Willy Wonka a thing or two? Michele Ferrero, the man at the helm of the confectionary empire, the creator of Nutella. Sadly, Mr. Ferraro passed away this week on Valentine's Day. As my quiet acknowledgement to the man responsible for the chocolate hazelnut spread, I turn my attention to the trays of unloved too-thin toast cookies. Sandwiching a schmear's worth of Nutella between two cookies turns them into Nutella sandwiches. World Nutella Day takes place every year on February 5th. We didn't acknowledge it at work, but in my world, armed with a spoon, or a recipe, everyday is Nutella Day.
Raspberry Pear Pie in Nutella Crust Recipe Here
Professional Pie-isms & Seasonal Sarcasm