National Cookie Day

Celebrating National Cookie Day: 5 Utensils for Your Best Cookies

Today is National Cookie Day—an appropriate holiday to start the gift-giving season!

Here at Pacific Cookie Company, we’re preparing our ovens for overtime. Though 2020 has been strange, to say the least, one thing remains true: cookies are one of the best sweets for the holidays!

Wondering what you need to start? Below, you’ll find some important utensils you’ll need to create your best cookies yet. Have a baker in your life? These gifts just might nudge them to make an extra batch… but we didn’t say that.

1. Cookie Scoops

Wanting that perfect bite? A cookie scoop will help you out! Differently-sized dough balls may bake irregularly, giving you an uneven batch. With cookie scoops, you’re guaranteeing a satisfying outside crunch and gooey middle in ALL of your cookies.

2. Food Scale

As Sally’s Baking Addiction puts it: “an ounce is always an ounce. A cup is NOT always a cup.” For the most precise measurements, put your ingredients on the scale; nothing will be as accurate. Plus, you can reuse your utensils—no need for three different measuring spoons when you can use the same bowl to measure your ingredients.

3. Cookie Cutters

We’ve all seen those #CookieFails: people make dough into custom shapes… only for the dough to expand and turn into an unrecognizable shape. (Still delicious, but not a snowman like they’d hoped!) Invest in cookie cutters if you’re wanting to branch out from circles, rather than free-handing it—the sharp edges will keep your dough in shape from pre- to post-bake.

4. Spatula

Sounds obvious to have in the kitchen, but when do you use spatulas for cookies? Well, there are lots of times. After mixing ingredients, use a spatula to get every bit of dough out from the bowl. It’s also necessary for folding in ingredients, like chocolate chips and sprinkles. And, most importantly: tasting the excess dough!

5. Cooling Racks

We won’t blame you if you snag a few cookies right off the sheet. But cookies need adequate cooling to avoid melting in the bottom, creating a still-delicious-but-sopping-mess cookie. These will raise them up and allow for good air circulation—bringing them to the perfect consistency.

We hope you have a good time baking on National Cookie Day. And, hey, if you’re not just feeling it, you’re welcome to stop by our store or order online! We’re here for you this holiday season.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is this week, and we at Pacific Cookie Company believe in practicing gratitude. Not just now, but always.

However, the winter can be hard for some people. Cold weather, darkened days, rain season—it’s all a huge change from the cheer that comes from summer. So, it’s important now to tap into the positivity that the holidays bring and stay mindful. Needing some ideas on how to practice gratitude? Here are some ideas!

1. Keep a gratitude journal, and write in it every day. It can be one word, three paragraphs—whatever you’re feeling that day. No matter how minor the occurrence or small the object, it’s worth writing down.

2. Thank those in your life. Thank colleagues for their help through difficult tasks; thank family for being kind and consistent; thank the janitor for all of their after-hours work; thank friends for always listening. You’ll pass along positivity to those in your life, and that joy will come back around.

3. Reach out those you love but don’t speak with often. How are your grandparents? When was the last time you called them just to catch up? Make their day and make the call. Try to talk about a variety of subjects, or ask about stories from their childhoods. They’ll love to bond with you and form a deeper connection.

4. Share little treats. Whether you’re making food for the homeless shelter, donating leashes and collars to the SPCA, or adopting a family for the holidays, share some joy. It doesn’t have to cost a thing—bake cookies or paint giftbags, for example. You can also partner up with friends and family for a cause and donate your time and efforts together.

5. Set an alarm for every other hour, then focus on grounding yourself with positive affirmations for 30 seconds when it rings. It doesn’t sound like much time, but bringing your attention to the good can be helpful in our overwhelming season. Think about your dog, your volunteer work, the upcoming holidays, family—whatever brings you back to the now.

We hope you have a fantastic Thanksgiving. From all of us, stay safe, and stay grateful!

How to Fit Chocolate into Everyday Eating

Chocolate: perfect for when you’re sad, happy, tired, have low blood sugars, or simply desire a taste of something sweet. And some exciting news: some chocolate is actually good for you!

Don’t believe us? Take a look at some studies. Published in 2015 by the journal Heart, people who ate more dark chocolate each day than those who refrained from having any had a lower risk of heart disease and stroke. And in another study presented at the 2018 Experimental Biology meeting, it was reported that eating 70-percent-cacao, organic chocolate each day had positive effects on memory and mood.

So, how can you squeeze more chocolate into your daily life for those health benefits? Try these out!

1. Mix It into Smoothies and Coffee

Add that daily dose of chocolate into a smoothie to sweeten it up. Pair it with commonly chocolate-decorated foods, such as berries and bananas, to give it that sweet-yet-fresh flavor. You can even throw some veggies in there to really up the health factor—we promise it won’t taste weird!

With coffee, you’re already pouring creamer, sugar, and milk in. Replace these ingredients with chocolate for a sweet wake-up. Or add it to the other ingredients—we won’t judge.

2. Make it Savory

Use either chopped up pieces of chocolate or a drizzle to spread that goodness onto savory foods, like popcorn or pretzels. You can also make your hearty meals taste sweeter—add some melted chocolate to mole or oatmeal, for example, or bake chocolate chips into your muffins.

3. Add it to Snacks

If you’re looking for a quick blood-sugar boost, add chocolate into your everyday snacks. Eating protein balls with nut butter? Dip them in chocolate and let them harden, then take it on the go. Mix chips into your yogurt for a hint of sweetness, or cover almonds and/or walnuts in chocolate, then pack the sweets in your bag. They are a nice pick-me-up during the day.

There are plenty of ways to add chocolate to your day—don’t be afraid to get creative. And check out our Dr. Midnight cookies, made up of delicious semi-sweet chocolate. It’ll hit the spot!

Meet Our Newest Blogger!

Hello everyone! My name is Tess, and I am a HUGE Pacific Cookie Company fan. I’m a local Santa Cruz musician, but I also enjoy writing—mostly about food, and especially about cookies.

I’ve said it before: I can barely stop myself from entering the store on Pacific Avenue whenever I smell fresh cookies down the street. They’ve been icons in Santa Cruz for the past forty years for a reason. Take a bite into one of their cookies, and you’ll be hooked for life.

My first Pacific Cookie Company taste-tests were when I was a little girl. My parents would run around Santa Cruz for work, and they’d often stop and grab some fresh cookies prior to picking me up from school, or dance, or swim. It became a routine, a ritual: congrats, kid, you made it through the day, so eat a cookie.

Eventually, I moved away for college and work, and I had to leave the cute little shop and delicious cookies that had become a part of my sweet tooth. But six years later, I have returned to Santa Cruz—and the trips to Pacific Cookie Company have resumed once again!

I am so excited to join the team and contribute to their blog. The Pearsons are absolutely fantastic, and they clearly know what they’re doing in the kitchen. Here’s to much more taste-testing in the (very, very, very near) future.

Check in for recipes, baking tips, and other fun/informative articles on a weekly basis! I’m here to educate and amuse those who are as invested in cookie culture as I am.

Stay sweet,

Tess