Friday, 22 August 2014
A discreet sandwich bar and cafe to the locals, Scout’s Honour is one of Redfern’s hidden pearls. A stack of its signature cookie, the Burnt Butter Triple Choc, sits beside a mound of muffins and other baked goods on an open wood platter. I felt a little guilty buying the last four at noon – but I suppose that’s a sign of how in-demand they are. So, no – I guess I don’t feel guilty, then.
The Burnt Butter Triple Choc presents a mouthwatering combination of flavours. At its heart is the burnt butter, which envelops the senses with a rich, nutty taste. Milk chocolate chips add pops of creaminess through each bite; and the sea salt, sprinkled liberally over the surface, accentuates the flavours just a little more without going overboard. The sea salt is a devastatingly effective ingredient in the way it coats your lips, too – I was licking them long after I’d finished, which kept me on a cookie high for at least another 30 minutes.
The lady at the counter explained that today’s batch had a peanut butter centre instead of Nutella (this may have something to do with the world hazelnut shortage), but it didn’t really matter. After working through the rich, complex flavours of the Burnt Butter Triple Choc, biting into the peanut butter is like reaching the centre of a jam-filled doughnut – a torrent of pure, unfiltered richness – the perfect finish to the cookie if, like me, you eat around the edges and save the best for last.
It’s difficult to judge this cookie, though, as the folks at Scout’s Honour don’t seem to be able to produce a consistent batch. Between the four that I bought, they ranged from being as hard and crunchy as an Arnott’s Ginger Nut to being as soft and chewy as an old pizza. I’d put this down to the fact that the cookies are all so thin – it means they’re more susceptible to being over and under-cooked.
I don’t know that that’s necessarily a bad thing. It gives them a homemade charm that I rather warm to.
Personally I prefer them on the slightly softer/chewier side, but that’s only because I had the luxury to choose. Early birds and all that.
Rating out of 10 (where 10 = ermahgerd this is amazeballs; 5 = meh; and 0 = I want my money back):
8.0 – A rich and wholly satisfying combination of flavours (7.0 if you get a crunchy one)
Where: Scout’s Honour, 118 George Street (cnr Refern Street), Redfern, NSW 2016. It’s a brisk 5-minute walk from Redfern Station, but it’s not too difficult to find local parking.
How much: $4 each
About Kevvie’s Cookie Safari: People have been telling me for years that my wife’s chocolate chip cookies are the best they’ve ever eaten. It didn’t occur to me until now to test the claim. But if you’re interested, she uses a Jacques Torres recipe from the book ‘A Year in Chocolate’.