Nostalgia in a Cookie

Nostalgia in a Cookie

When I was a little girl, my father would make trips to the local bakery for our weekly bread and pastries.  Although donuts were a family favorite, often found on our kitchen table on Saturday/Sunday mornings, what I really liked were the bakery cookies.

The cookies that my father would bring home were wafer cookies, layered in chocolate, strawberry, or vanilla cream. I remember calling them neopolitan cookies, although I’m sure that was not their real name. The cookies were melt-in-your mouth delicious, making them very hard to stop with just one. Personally, I liked to eat all three flavors just so I could compare the taste each time, wondering if I would find a favorite – vanilla, I think. Hmm, maybe strawberry…

After going away to college and, eventually, moving to Chicago, I thought I’d seen the last of those little wafer cookies. That is, until I came across a similar cookie at World Market.

World Market is of course known for their food, wine, and products imported from all over the world. I love walking through to the store to see the new food items, wine selection, seasonal décor, and more. While on a recent trip to World Market, I happened down the cookie/sweets aisle, as I always do, to see if there were any interesting cookies. I had seen a blue package of cookies on the shelf there before with what looked like wafer cookies on the picture. I didn’t give them much thought, as is what usually happens when I see store-bought, prepackaged cookies. But on that day, I felt compelled to buy them. Maybe it was the long, stressful day at work or the fact that I was extremely tired that drew me to the picture on the package and what was inside. Or it could be that the cookies are imported from Germany – and you can rarely go wrong with European imported goodies.

When I brought the Hans Freitag cookies home, I could barely wait 5 minutes before opening them for a sample. The cookies were a mix of vanilla and chocolate flavors and tasted amazing – quite like the cookies I enjoyed as a girl. The thin wafer provided a light crunch, while the middle layers were just as creamy and sweet as I remember. Each bite reminded me of childhood – bringing back the memories of Saturday mornings, cookie lookouts, and being, once again, with my parents and brothers and sisters in our modest little house. Even though there were only two flavors, I naturally could still not stop at just one. For nostalgia’s sake, I had to compare the taste of chocolate vs. vanilla. Yes, I think vanilla is my favorite, but I better try one more to be sure.

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