A Mixed bag, so to speak
Warning for allergy eaters: This is on the back of the box in small print “Contains Milk, Wheat, Soy, processed in a facility that uses eggs, peanuts, and tree nuts”.
*I am thrilled to have had the opportunity to get a variety pack since I had never tried her packaged snacks and small enough that if you don’t like them or get allergic to something, you don’t have a whole lot to give away and feel you wasted alot of money.
*CHEESE STRAWS are the second biggest pro but I would like to buy them on their own in a larger package in the future.
* CHEESE STRAWS stay crunchy, taste great, no aftertaste
Okay, this may seem like a contradiction because I love that I can get a small variety pack in order to try something out – if I got a full box, it would be plenty but once you open the box and then open the little bag stuffed in the bottom, you barely get anything in each package. No offense but what a waste of a beautiful package/box for less than two servings of a snack. If you eat a couple here and a couple there (of cheese straws) you could make the package last two days. If there’s two people having two here and two there, and they have complete self control and are very conscious of limiting your portion sizes (people who have the ability to eat 4 potato chips and not go back until tomorrow) I’d give it an hour, or less. For me, the cheese straws lasted an hour – I put them away three times. There’s certainly not enough to put in a little nut size bowl and set it out on the coffee table if you are having a couple people over. This is literally a sample packet put into a box that’s made to look like you are getting a full box of treats.
One open box is 7″ tall and 3 1/2″ wide. Inside the box is a gold bag that is about 5″x4 1/2″. But the contents of the bag is 4 1/2″ wide and only 2″ tall. For the cookies, because they are so sweet/strong you can make them last a few days, and they are tiny (size of a quarter for the pineapple cookies), so just a few will do for the chocolate cookies and pineapple cookies. But still, nowhere near putting them in a nut-size small bowl unless you combine them all.
*All snacks except for the cheese straws, change texture in less than 5 minutes of being open. Immediately transfer to a tightly closed ziploc or tight lidded “tupperware” type container. They all are crunchy when opened but after a couple of minutes, the pineapple and the shortbread go from firm , crunchy pecan sandies to falling apart crumbly and can’t hold the cookie as a solid piece, the Chocolate marsh go from solid crunchy to a stale chewy texture. The texture changed before I put them away the very first time and each time I only had a couple cookies and decided to put them away but the texture already changed dramatically.
CHEESE STRAWS –
If you’ve had Paula Deen’s Macaroni and Cheese – which I was able to find online – and you like it, the Cheese Straws taste very much like the Macaroni and Cheese. It has a strong Cheddar flavor but not quite “Sharp cheddar” or “mild cheddar”, more like a medium with a stronger taste than medium. It also seems like it is a multi cheese, but I don’t know what other cheese is in it. I ate them and tossed the box the night I got them. They look like crinkle fries, fatter than my pinky,crunchy when opened and they stay that way-while I had them out and each time I went back for more,still crunchy and very good. No funky after taste (like two others).
PINEAPPLE DROP COOKIES – Quarter size, very very strong pineapple taste, with a very very sweet powdered sugar on top that tastes like it has pineapple (or something?) flavoring too. Bitter after taste, way too strong, crunchy in a “pecan sandies” like texture, unless they are out for a couple minutes, then they crumble. I had two cookies with a few minutes in between because it was so very strong I didn’t know if I really wanted another one. When I reached in the tiny bag for the second cookie, they were already crumbly. I couldn’t have a 3rd and instead gave them away – they were just terrible, although I usually love pineapple, love sandies type cookies, and love powdered sugar. But there was nothing good about these.
COCONUT PECAN BARS – about 2″ long rounded top rectangle, they were mostly broken but that was okay. These too are like a “pecan sandies” texture to start with, good crunch, but does turn soft and crumbly very quickly. The initial flavor is very good, like a powdered sugar covered pecan sandy with a hint of coconut flavor and obvious pieces of coconut once you chew the cookie, and pecan flavor, but very little in the way of tiny pecan pieces. The main problem is the awful after taste that lasted way too long-not bitter like the pineapple but just as funky. Worse than that is that the after taste isn’t recognizable. It isn’t coconut, isn’t pecan, it’s what I usually call “chemically” because it’s not a food flavor. Even strong coffee didn’t get rid of it. But I did have four of them before tossing the other 6-8 cookies in the trash. First 2 were the original texture and the last two fell apart in my hand, like a handful of sand with some coconut. Literally, not 3 minutes after the first two I ate, the last two were like a totally different cookie, could not hold itself together and the sandies crunch was gone replaced by crumbled ingredients that made the shredded coconut much more obvious (not bad if you like coconut, which I do)but no longer a cookie, more a pile of crumbs. But the after taste is a product killer, I just couldn’t have any more.
CHOCOLATE MARSH MUD COOKIES- The best sweet in the assortment. Round quarter size, sweet enough that you only need a few but not so sweet that you don’t want more. Not mild like milk chocolate, more like bitter-sweet chocolate chips type flavor or cocoa powder. Except for the bizarre texture change, they were good and I ate them all over a few days. There’s not that many, they are small like the pineapple cookies but chocolatey enough that I couldn’t just eat the little bag in one or two sittings. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy them quite as much two hours later when I went to have another two cookies because they had a chewy/stale texture-not chewy out of the oven, but chewy/stale/rubbery and even though they were folded over twice with the sides tucked in, clamped closed with a mini binder clip, and back in the closed box, the texture still morphed – that’s just weird to me. Next day out of a ziploc, still chewy but didn’t get worse. They were still an actual cookie and held together to be eaten like a cookie (well, it’s bite-size so it’s not like you’re going to take a bite anyway, it’s too small for that but it’s not a pile of crumbs like the other two, but if they were a normal size cookie, they could be bitten into without losing the entire cookie. Anyway, although it was totally weird, like nothing I’ve ever seen before, this morphing texture thing that is almost immediate, I still ate the rest of the Chocolate Mud Cookies. But, I wouldn’t buy them again. They weren’t good enough to ignore the texture thing and $5 a box for less than a nut bowl’s worth of cookies (they are sold here– 4 boxes, 3 oz each, same as this set for $19current price-$24 regular price)that’s just a ridiculous price for the amount of product, especially considering the quality as a whole. Sorry Paula Deen, the cookies in this set are just not quality products and 3 oz is much less than you could ever think. Sadly, the one and only decent product that I would buy again from this sample is the Cheese Straws and it is THE ONLY PRODUCT IN THIS SET THAT IS NOT AVAILABLE ON ITS OWN. That’s a shame because I would buy them today.