Keep your e-mails pouring in, it's good to know that there are lots of you out there with views and opinions.
To help you work out what is what, are now little icons to help you see biscuit related themes. And now you can see at a glance which are the most contested subjects via this graph (requires Flash 6.0 plugin).
Please keep your mails coming in to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you like, you can use this search thingy to find stuff that matches with any of the icons you pick, or use the fantastic free text search, Yay!
||Forgive my shocking ignorance of British culture (I'm an American, and we are required by law to have shocking ignorance of all cultures, lest we be cast out into Canada), but I was curious if you have Girl Scouts and/or their cookies in your country. The GS yield to none on their Thin Mints cookies, a delicate crunchy chocolate base coated with a minty fudge layer that knocks your socks off at twenty paces. The aroma really grabs you by the lapels and screams, mint!|
(By the way, I asked around, and the leader of the local GS troop tells me that these cookies are in fact "cookies" and must be referred to as such at all times, on pain of the aforementioned casting into Canada.)
|Nicey replies: Our Girl Scouts are called Girl Guides for the most part and they haven't got the enormous door to door cookie distribution business that your lot have. Our leading mint biscuit is the Viscount, and in Australia its the Arnotts Mint Slice.|
In response to your strange "discovery" that the Americans don't have electric kettles, may I say that as a proud Canadian, electric kettles DO exist in North America. Many of my friends have them in their kitchens. Aside from our lattes and double espressos, we do love a nice cuppa every now and then.
Ex-Vancouverite living in the UK
|Nicey replies: Ahh maybe it was a Canadian Kettle that was really responsible for the recent power outage. |
||Thanks very much for the review and recognition of the 'Dare Maple Leaf Creme Cookie' (although we still call them biscuits, not cookies like the package says). Despite being a house-afire at home, Maple Leaf Creme Cookie would never feel truly successful, appreciated, admired or loved until he had heard that his name had been mentioned by someone (anyone!) in the States. Now to find out that he's been examined and accepted by the U.K., well, this was more than he dared wish for. It's like winning the Stanley Cup for old MLCC! All this time he's just kept his head down, working hard at being the best damn maple flavoured baked-good he could be. Who knew? |
So keep enjoying those Maple Cremes and...thanks again, eh!
|Nicey replies: Scott,
Glad you liked Pete's review. We still have a couple of Maple Creams in our biscuit tin under a fearsome layer of Morning Coffee.
||Dear Nicey and Co.,|
Glad to see your wonderful website going from strength to strength and getting the public recognition it deserves. Tea, biscuits and sit-downs are the backbone of this country and it was high time someone came along to cast a critical and informed eye over the whole arena. Respect due! You're like the Harry Knowles of the biscuit world (that's to be taken as a compliment, by the way, not an insult). When is the 'Nice Cup of Tea and a Sit Down Guide to Biscuits' coming out? Come on folks, it's only a matter of time!
Anyhow, my reason for writing is to point out to those whose appetites have been whetted by Pete Biggs's review of the Dare Maple Leaf Cream that they are actually available in a few of the big chain supermarkets, so no need to make the long haul to Canada or adopt a Winnipeg penpal to get your chompers around one. I myself picked up a packet from my local Safeway, along with a box of Dare Blueberry Cheesecake Creams. I agree with Mr Biggs's verdict that the Maple Leaf is a delicious biscuit, especially when dunked, but I felt the lack of pecan as I ate. Maple and pecan are like a veteran double-act (like Canon and Ball) - they go together so well you're a bit non-plussed when you find them apart, and as a result the Maple Leaf felt somehow incomplete. Pecan pieces cooked into the biscuit itself or added to the cream would have been the perfect finishing touch to an otherwise flawless effort. As the Wife (yours that is) might say - Dare bakery people: take heed!
The Dare Blueberry Cheesecakes are noteworthy. They make very interesting eating, as they combine the sweet, sharp flavour of blueberries with the savoury warmth of cream cheese. I'm put in mind of a warm, snuggly duvet placed over a bed of very pointy needles - blueberries can be very sharp and wince-inducing, cream cheese can very sickly and cloying, but when combined they bring out the best qualities in each other. So just as the duvet-covered bed of needles is restful and yet bracing, the Cheesecake Cream is smoothy sweet and yet piquant. Couple all that with tea, if you're a dunker, and the effect in the mouth is quite distinctive. All in all, these biscuits are an interesting variation on the cream sandwich motif, and well worth a try in my opinion.
Wishing you all the best,
P.S. I think maybe I should stay away from metaphors for a while.
P.P.S. On the personal mug awareness front, I drink my tea out of a Starbucks mug. I like to think of this as my ironic protest against globalisation and the tyranny of cafe latte culture. Every time I sip my tea I chuckle knowingly to myself. Down with the Oreo cookie!!
|Nicey replies: Yes very insightful stuff there about the Pecan nuts. I have still to open my pack of Dare Maple creams, hand couriered from Canada by Biscuit Enthusiast Mandy (now to occasionally known as Mrs B), but I've had a few before, and I think you are on to something there.
Here's hoping that I can eat them without a gnawing sense of incompleteness.
Weston's Wagon Wheels Review
I have beside me a Canadian Wagon Wheel, along with a ruler. This diminutive treat is but 6.7 cm in diameter, and 1.8 cm thick. According to friends and family who ate the rest of the Wagon Wheels that I purchased, they are mighty delicious.
For your information, there really is raspberry in the raspberry filling in the Canadian Wagon Wheel. There are also a number of positively frightening-sounding components. The ingredients of the Wheel are as follows: sugar, enriched flour, glucose, hydrogenated palm kernel oil, glucose-fructose, vegetable oil shortening, cocoa, apple pulp (apples, sulphites, potassium sorbate), gelatin, modified milk ingredients, fancy molasses, salt, sorbitan tristearate, sodium bicarbonate, raspberries, pectin, soya lecithin, citric acid, ammonium bicarbonate, sodium benzoate, monocalcium phosphate, nutmeg, natural and artificial flavour, colour (contains tartrazine). Each 41-gram cookie contains 167 calories (700 kJ) and practically no nutritional value whatsoever, but who cares?
Something you should know: it appears as though Weston sold his Wagon Wheels, as the only ones I could find are made by Viau McCormicks, which appears to be a subsidiary of Dare Foods Limited. These Wheels are a genuinely Canadian product, however; it says so right on the box.
I hope that this information proves useful to you and completes your quest for information on the Wagon Wheels of the world.
|Nicey replies: Jenni,
Thanks for that wonderful piece of trans-altlantic biscuit detection, and the wealth of data in your report. Good to see that the Canadians are settling for a 67mm Wagon wheel which is 7mm smaller than our own, although you may have the edge over us on depth. Amazing to see Raspberries turning up in the jam, this must be a first for the whole genre, you should be proud as a Canadian, even if you are unable to eat them due to your dietary restrictions.