Monday, May 4, 2015

The Pros and Cons of Making Your Own Chocolate Chip Cookies in Finland



I love dessert. I get very cranky if I can't have something sweet after bth lunch and dinner. I've been checked for diabetes and other health issues, and there's no real medical reason for this, other than maybe a subconscious sugar addiction. In any case, I eat a lot of cookies.

Chocolate chip cookies aren't really a "thing" in Finland. Subway sells theirs, and certain bakeries and coffee shops will have their own on occasion, but generally when I need chocolate chip cookies, I either need to make them myself or buy a pack from the store.

The Perks Of Store-Bought Cookies

Portion control: The cookies usually come in packs of 8 or  12, and have sections that hold 2 or 3 cookies each. This makes it easy to old yourself accountable and not binge, since you can clearly see how many "sections" of the pack you've eaten. This might not work for everyone, but it does for me.
Longer counter life: Because these cookies and processed and have some preservatives, they last longer on the counter or in the cookie jar once opened.
Size: Store-bought cookies are generally bigger, though one could always just bake bigger cookies.
Price: The upfront cost of store-bought cookies is lower. A pack typically costs between 0.79-1.40€, and while these packs contain less cookies than a home-made batch would, the up-front cost is lower(See my bullet point about chocolate chips below).
Convenience: this goes without saying.

Cons:

Added stuff: With an processed food, there are always added sugars and preservatives. The reality is that there's a reason these cookies are so affordable, and that's that the quality of what you're actually getting isn't very good.


The Perks of Home-Made Cookies:

Ingredient control: Making your own cookies help you know exactly what's in your cookies, and allows you to accommodate for allergies, or to just avoid added sweeteners or preservatives.
Better flavor: In my opinion, the cookie recipe I use tastes better than anything I've gotten from the store.
Cookie dough: Who doesn't love to lick the spoon?
Lots of cookies: One batch of my dough makes roughly 40 cookies, making it a really good recipe for parties or other events.

Cons:

Chocolate chips: Chocolate chips are really, really expensive. Even the Pirkka chips are over 3€ for 125 grams. I've found Punnitse ja Säästä  to have the lowest price, but even then they're nowhere near as cheap as they are in the US. To make my dough, I spend about 6€ on chips alone. I could always buy a bar of baking chocolate and smash it, which would cost about half of the price of the chips, but it's just not the same to me.

All in all, it really comes down to preference. I love baking, and I love the recipe I use. But, for some, buying cookies at the store is so much easier. Whatever you choose, remember not to binge too much!

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