Saturday, May 7, 2011

Afghan Cookies, Kumquat Cupcakes and James Beard Award

Afghan Cookies

Food Diary (May 7, 2011)
Breakfast: Rolled oats with banana, toasted coconut, sunflower seeds and flaxseeds
Lunch: Herring in tomato oyster sauce with spaghetti
Dinner: Pork curry and rice, muesli
Baking/sweets: Afghan Cookies

Today I made Afghan cookies. The timing is not intended to be related to recent events in any way, it is just sheer coincidence. I had been planning on making Afghan cookies for some time. The delay was due to my inability to take into possession one of the key ingredients, corn flakes. After much patience, persistence and planning, the mission to secure possession of cornflakes was successfully accomplished on Thursday, May 5. It was a clean job, I went into the supermarket, took possession, paid and left. The corn flakes were undamaged. I am serious, I have the receipt to prove it!

There was total secrecy surrounding the plans to make Afghan cookies. Publicity before the actual event would have raised expectations and potentially jeopardized the cookie baking mission. And I didn’t twitter live, I don’t have a twitter account and the whole process was short, about 10 minutes preparation and 15 minutes baking.

Afghan cookies use lot of cornflakes and on visual inspection of photographic evidence you can probably guess it has cocoa or chocolates as well. You must wonder what the connection is between cocoa, corn flakes and Afghanistan. Corn and cocoa do not grow in Afghanistan and neither do these ingredients feature in Afghani cuisine. You are probably thinking that external influence or occupation resulted in corn flakes and cocoa being introduced into Afghani cuisine. Answer is no. Afghan cookies have nothing to do with Afghanistan, or any country near or related to Afghanistan. These cookies were born in New Zealand many decades ago. I tried to find out why it is called Afghan cookies but to no avail. Nobody seems to know, even wiki does not have the answers. A few blogs speculate on why its called Afghan cookies.

Afghan cookies are chunky, crunchy and slightly crumbly. And just like ANZAC cookies Afghan cookies require just a handful of ingredients and they are very easy to make.

I really did make these cookies, its not a joke. And to prove it I am posting photographic evidence. The pictures are really of Afghan cookies and not any ordinary chocolate cookies. If you do a detailed visual examination you will notice corn flakes and chocolate and this gives it almost 100% certainly that it is Afghan cookies, perhaps 99,9% to be more accurate. If you were nearby I would certainly allow you to do a taste test to confirm beyond reasonable doubt that these are in fact Afghan cookies.

Today's Favourite Photo
Kumquat Spiced Cupcakes with Crème Fraîche Frosting

Today’s Favourite Blog
Ruth Bourdain, a fictitious character is now a James Beard Foundation winner for humor writing. Ruth Bourdain is a cross between Ruth Reichl and Anthony Bourdain. The creator of Ruth Bourdain did not come forward to accept the award during Friday's ceremony in New York City. It is not even known whether it’s a he or she. My first guess is ‘she’ since Ruth is a female name but this is probably not correct logic. 

It is amazing how something fictional can win a James Beard Award. It would be very interesting to see if and how Ruth capitalises on this publicity.


  1. The cookie look like rough Afghan terrain, maybe that is reason for calling it Afghan cookie

  2. Whatever the reason the cookies look delicious!. I am very interested to see what they taste like

  3. Last year, I reviewed the Australian Pie place and received a free Afghan cookie from them, I definitely its crunchy taste. Honey joy is another great Australian dessert.

  4. Thank you a lot for choosing my photo as your favourite :) At first, I thought that Afghan cookies came from Afghanistan :D It's really interesting and I had no idea that Afghan cookies existed, but they do look very tasty :)

  5. I have never heard of Afghan cookies... They look quite easy and delicious! I usually have all the required ingredients, so must try to prepare them soon.

  6. Wow those cookies looks really good, with that touch of chocolate on top this would not make it to the cookie jar.