I’m not so sure this is really going to be a review as much as it is an ode to the best Girl Scout cookie ever created: the Samoa. Ok, so as an English geek, I supposed I can’t technically call it an ode as I will not be writing in verse or anything, but the purpose is kind of the same. I intend to “sing” the praises of this wonderful cookie treat.
Now, many, many moons ago, I was a Girl Scout. Even then, the best time of year was cookie time. Don’t misunderstand, I liked the camping, the good deed doing and the calendar selling (apparently not all troops did this, but every troop I was in in California did). I even kind of liked the Girl Scout Olympics which was held at a high school track and required us to compete against all the other troops in our county in track and field activities. I ran and did the long jump, but wasn’t good at either, so I never got a ribbon or anything. Back then the world wasn’t quite as touchy feely and we didn’t get ribbons for participating, only for coming in 1st, 2nd or 3rd. I did get a really cool pink troop t-shirt with a unicorn on it though (which I wasn’t allowed to wear, but that is an entirely different story), so that made it sort of worth it.
Wow, I really digressed there, huh?
Anyway, even as a wee 7-year-old, I loved cookie time. I didn’t really dig the contest for who could sell the most boxes. There was no way I could win that. Even calling all my relatives over 2000 miles away and begging them to buy from me (and they did buy copious amounts) wasn’t going to put me anywhere near the top spot. The other girls had parents who could take their order forms in to work. Not me. My mom was the stay at home variety and my step-dad worked for a company with a strict no soliciting policy. They did not bend for anything, even little girls with chubby faces and Poochie pig tails.
No, for me, the joy of cookie time was getting to order my favorite cookies. Every year I would talk my dad (and my aunt and any other family member I could) into buying me a box (or two or three) of cookies. I tried them all. Of course, back in that day there were fewer to choose from. We had Tagalongs, Do-si-do’s, Thin Mints, Chocolate Chunks, Trefoils and Samoas. Between the contributions of my family members and the money I managed to save up (cookies were only $1.50 a box back then), I got boxes of each type of cookie except Thin Mints. I never had to buy those because my mom was addicted and practically bought a year’s supply.
After the first year I nixed the Do-si-do’s. They were too much like any other peanut butter sandwich cookie I could get at the store. I only got the Chocolate Chunks one year too. They were good and all, but sort of a souped up Chips Ahoy. They actually had too many chocolate chunks for me and since they weren’t soft and chewy, I wasn’t a huge fan. The Tagalongs were fairly decent, but until my mid-20’s I was never really a peanut butter person (with the exception of Reese’s cups), so I stopped getting those as well. I concentrated my efforts on Trefoils and Samoas.
Trefoils were good. Back then they had the giant flecks of sugar on them. I assume they must have been deemed uber unhealthy that way, because I can’t imagine any other reason to take those shimmering spangles of goodness off. I’ve had the newer version and while I still like them just fine, I’m not spending my hard-earned cash on them. Although I do love that my favorite cafe makes a vanilla steamer which tastes just like the cookie of my youth.
After awhile, I gave up on the Trefoils too. I used all my money (and that of my family) to procure the tastiest cookie morsel to come in a box: Samoas! I don’t know exactly what it is about these delicious little treasures, but I can never get enough of them. The crisp shortbread cookie underneath with the caramel and chocolate remind me a bit of one of my favorite childhood candy bars (Twix). However, there is something magical about the toasted coconut they throw on top that makes it a completely different treat. Considering how amazing they are, I’m still surprised Twix hasn’t come out with a coconut version. I’m not sure it would be as good, but I know I’d try it.
Every year I get so excited to get my box. Yes, that’s right, as an adult, I have managed to tame my cookie love just a tad. I limit myself to one box and I savour them. I put them in the fridge so they are cool when I bite in. I love the extra crunch it gives to the cookie. I nibble them slowly since I know I can never get by with only 1 cookie and the box only holds about 18. The coconut melts in my mouth. The chocolate is not over powering, but just a nice companion to the caramel. I love these little gems so much that I have to make sure I have no cash when I enter a grocery store during cookie season. If I do, I must hurry by the tables stacked high with those bright purple boxes, making sure not to look at the sweet faces of little girls peddling them. I am, after all, not a strong woman.
I am down to my last four cookies and am already regretting not buying more. I tell myself I should be proud though, my husband devoured his Do-si-do’s ages ago. I know the boxes are starting to disappear from stores, and I am already looking forward to next year. I can’t wait for my little girl to join scouts and start selling. Luckily for her, both my husband and I can sell practically anything we want at school. And teachers are suckers for sweets.
Price: 7/10 (kind of hefty for so few cookies, but it does go toward a good cause)