100 Favorite Dishes 2014-15: No. 74, The Couch Potato Cookie at Fluff Bake Bar
Once again, Kaitlin Steinberg is eating her way through Houston and counting down her 100 favorite dishes as we work our way toward our annual Menu of Menus® issue and culinary extravaganza. She'll compile a collection of the dishes she thinks are the most delicious, most creative and, of course, most indicative of our ever-changing food scene. It's a list of personal favorites, things she thinks any visitor or Houstonian ought to try at least once and dishes that are uniquely Houstonian.
Photos by Kaitlin Steinberg It may look simple, but there's a whole lot going on in this cookie.
Though pastry chef Rebecca Masson doesn't have a storefront--yet--her goodies are available at spots all over town. From Southside Espresso to Revival Market to Max's Wine Dive, Fluff Bake Bar's cookies, Cup|Cakes and macarons sure are treats when you stumble across them (or, as I do, seek them out) from area coffee shops and eateries.
One of the more unusual offerings on a menu of old school treats like hobnobs, fluffernutters and moon pies is an invention Masson calls the "Couch Potato." I recently brought some of these cookies to the office (mostly for me), and I attempted to share them with my coworkers. When I explained the ingredients to them, most turned up their noses.
"Potato chips...? In a cookie...?"
Yes, potato chips. And pretzels and marshmallows and chocolate chips and corn flake crunch (a Masson invention somewhat like a sweet and salty puppy chow with corn flakes). All packed together in one oversized cookie.
They're sunken in the middle, like someone's behind in a sofa...
When she first invented it a few years ago, she wrote the list of ingredients on Facebook and asked for advice on what to call it. Someone suggested the "Couch Potato," because the cookie is filled with all things you might eat while sitting on a sofa chilling in front of the TV. Lance Zierlein, host of Sports Talk on 790 AM and Southbound Food on 740 AM, suggested they're called Couch Potatoes because they're cooked in a mold, resulting in a slight indentation in the center of each cookie, like one's ass might make in a sofa.
Whatever you want to call 'em, these babies are good.
As with most of Masson's desserts, there's an ample helping of salt in the cookies to pump up the flavor of the various ingredients. The pretzels, chips and corn flakes provide a nice crunch that doesn't diminish during the baking process, and the circular mold in which the cookies bake gives them a nice crust on the bottom as well as the sides.
But it's the mix of sweet and salty that I love best in these cookies and in all of Masson's delectable desserts. I, for one, can't wait for the Fluff Bake Bar storefront to debut. Champagne and cookies for everyone!
For now, you can find Couch Potato cookies at Revival Market and Inversion Coffee House.
Note: Full disclosure, Rebecca Masson is one of my dear friends, but we became friends because I developed an obsession with her baked goods. Regardless of your relationship with Masson, there's no denying her cookies and cakes are some of the best!
See the full list of favorites on the next page.