It seems like Cindy McCain is up to it again. It looks like she's been caught with her hand in the cookie jar trying to pass off other folks' recipes as her own. In this case, the nattering nabobs of negativity are saying she's guilty of lifting a recipe for Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies from Hershey's. Here's Cindy McCain's recipe (part of a prospective first lady cookie showdown; here's Michelle Obama's Shortbread Cookies recipe).
I'm going to give Ms. McCain the benefit of the doubt here. Her recipe is remarkably similar to the Hershey's recipe, but here are some talking points Cindy could use to get ahead of this spin:
- "Baking is an exact practice": You must follow ingredient amounts closely or risk your product failing. Because of that, there is little room for deviation in an Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookie recipe and little surprise that one would be so similar to another
- "I was merely acting on information given to me": It's pefectly plausible that McCain was given the recipe by a "good friend" who just so happened to get it from Hershey's. I mean, come on, how many families have incorporated and passed down the back-of-the-bag Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe into their repertoires? (Although I do love what So Good blog says, "It turns out that like many Republicans, one of Cindy’s “good friends” is not an actual person, but a corporation." Heh
And while I'm at it, I'd like to take Family Circle magazine to task for dragging the candidates' wives into this. I was hoping for a cleaner campaign this year, but it looks like the media just can't let the pols go toe to toe on the real issues without dragging cookie recipes into the mud.
And while I'm at it, what would have happened had Hillary Clinton won the nomination? Would the stereotypical gender roles be turned on their head with Bill being asked to pony up his best cookie? I'd hope so.
2. Beat butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar in large bowl until well blended. Add eggs and vanilla; beat well.
3. Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; gradually add to butter mixture, beating until well blended. Stir in oats and butterscotch chips; mix well. Drop by heaping teaspoons onto ungreased cookie sheet.
4. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. About 4 dozen cookies.
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) unsalted butter or margarine, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups rolled oats
1-2/3 cups butterscotch chips
2. In a large bowl beat the butter or margarine, granulated sugar and brown sugar together. Add the eggs and vanilla, beating well.
3. In a medium-size bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture; stir until blended. Stir in oats and butterscotch chips. Drop by tablespoonfuls about 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.
4. Bake at 375 degree F for 10 minutes, until the edges begin to brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Asked for comment on all this, noted baked-goods pundit Cookie Monster said, "Me no care where recipe come from. Me only care how cookie tastes! Om nom nom nom."