From the Heart

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Tea – Ahh…. the loveliest thing that could happen to anyone’s life.

What could possibly add to this delightful repast? DUNKING of course!!!! There is nothing better than relaxing back in your comfy chair, tea in hand and going for the “dunk” with that cookie or biscuit. Feeling stressed out? Dunk it longer.  Feeling drowsy? Dunk more than one.  Feeling excited? Dunk them all!

I know I am not alone here. Dunking cookies or biscuits, depending on where you live, in tea has to be one of life’s simple pleasures.  However, no-one actually admits that they do it, but everyone does it right? Cookies/biscuits and tea go together like peanut butter and jelly, bacon and eggs and Spaghetti and Meatballs.

Now, if  you are a dunker…

(I am), is there anything worse than holding your favorite cookie of choice (and in my case, an Almond Dark Chocolate Biscotti), in your tea for just a fraction of a second too long, and before you know it-  you’re left with a soggy mush of cookie at the bottom of your cup? Now you are forced to retrieve this mushy mush with a spoon. Any seasoned tea drinker will know that dunking a cookie in your tea is an art mastered only with years of practice. Too long and it crumbles. Too short and your cookie may as well be fresh out of the packet. It’s a delicate art — you’ve got to dip your cookie into your tea just long enough for it to soak up some liquid, but then making sure that you pull it out before a part of it breaks off and dissolves into your cup.

Believe it or not – look what I found…

British inventor Andrew Tinsley, from Watford, Hertfordshire, England, grew tiresome of finding floaty bits in his tea. He noticed his family was suffering from the same predicament, reports the UK Express. Even if you dip your cookie super fast, there’s really no way to avoid the conundrum. Until now, that is. Tinsley has created a mesh pouch, with a string, designed for dunking, called The Cookie Catcher. The Cookie Catcher sounds like a tea bag, but actually the mesh bag can hang out in your hot liquid, collecting the unwanted bits. It’s kind of like a soft, malleable cup within a cup. You can remove the non-intrusive bag when you’re done with your treat, which is reusable after a quick wash.

But what is it about dunking cookies into any liquid that has such appeal around the world?

A little historical research shows that the Romans dipped their cookies into wine. The Greeks had their own wine dipping tradition using a rusk like, twice baked cookie called a paximadi made from chickpea or barley flour. Hark tack biscuits, a stable for UK sailors in the 16th century, were dunked into beer and both sides of the US Civil War during the 19th century, were compelled to dunk their inedible hard tack into campfire brewed coffee. These HARD biscuits where sometimes known as “tooth dullers” or “molar breakers”. Queen Victoria was known to be a dunker, a carryover from the German custom learned when she was a child probably using manselbrot, a twice baked cookie.

I’ll leave you with this…

In the British movie The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, one of the main characters explains the word dunking to her new employer during an interview, while drinking tea: “Dunking is lowering the biscuit into the tea and letting it soak in there and trying to calculate the exact moment before the biscuit dissolves, when you whip it up into your mouth and enjoy the blissful union of biscuits and tea combined.“

 Do you agree? Dunking is an art! I’d love to hear your thoughts and findings, to dunk or not to dunk?

 

 

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