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When Lucas Kwan Peterson decided to categorize the beloved Girl Scout Cookies assortment, he knew he was descending into controversy.
“People have a very high opinion of these cookies,” said Peterson, an Los Angeles Times food columnist, told NPR All things Considered after releasing her “Official Girl Scout Cookie Power Ranking” last month.
“I think we all have this memory of having a bunch of boxes, someone going door to door, seeing the table in the parking lot of the grocery store. It really triggers a kind of sensory memory, of less for me. “
Of the dozen cookies he tested, he said Samoas – known as Caramel deLites in some parts of the country – won by far.
The combination of chewy caramel, toasted coconut and chocolate stripes, he says, puts it above the rest.
“It’s not even close,” he said. “Unless you really hate coconut, it’s just a premium cookie.”
The caramel chocolate chips are placed last. The gluten-free recipe asked a friend of Peterson’s to compare the texture to a dog treat.
A few readers contested with its # 4 ranking of iconic skinny skinny jeans.
But its sophisticated ranking system could appease Team Thin Mints. Aside from “better tasting,” his criteria included whether the cookie tasted good frozen.
“Everyone knows that eating frozen Girl Scout cookies is the best way to consume a Girl Scout cookie,” said the cookie provocateur.
For Peterson, the frozen test is what helped Thin Mints move up to number one in frozen cookies, despite placing fourth overall.
But before his local Girl Scout Council seeks revenge, the food critic admits his “official” ranking system is totally flawed.
“These rankings are all my personal favorites,” he said. “Although I say this is completely scientific and objective, this is obviously only my opinion. This ranking completely reflects what I personally believe and what I like to stick in my mouth at 11pm when I’m alone at my computer trying to write something. “
In all cases, the system is rigged from the start. There are technically 17 different cookies, but five of them each have a slightly modified twin that varies by region. Therefore, for the purposes of its ranking, Peterson noted 12 cookies.
Differences are indicated by name. For example, local Girl Scouts in Decatur, Georgia may enjoy a heavier ratio of peanut butter topping in their Tagalongs, while a troupe from Sacramento, California will taste more vanilla notes in their patties. with peanut butter.
Indeed, all the offers are made by two separate bakers. Each Girl Scout council, Peterson said, decides which baker they buy from. This means that, depending on where you live, you could get the short end of shortbread (or shamrocks, if you prefer).
Kira Wakeam and Tinbete Ermyas produced and edited the audio version of this story.