The cookies were definitely more of a project than I had expected. If you ever want to bake Cowboy Cookies in Germany, you can expect the process to be something like this:
- Translate recipe and ingredients into German
- Convert cups and teaspoons to grams
- Discover that baking powder and baking soda are only sold as a mixture
- Go shopping for the ingredients that are not normally kept in your host mother’s kitchen: chocolate chips, oatmeal, vanilla extract, shortening, brown sugar
5. Have the entire staff of the grocery store help you find shortening (don’t let them convince you that coconut oil or margarine is the same thing)
6. Start baking: sift the flour (with a strainer because there isn’t a sifter) and maybe add some water to the brown sugar because it’s dry
7. Finish making dough, place on trays in oven, and watch them turn all liquidy
They turned out really thin because of the wrong chemical reaction with the flour and baking soda/powder or something… However, my family thought they were delicious and we ended up making another batch today.
Oh yeah, almost forgot that I went to BERLIN! My host family (+ grandparents) took me last weekend. Although it was rainy and cold, I got to see the important parts of the city. We went to "The Story of Berlin" museum, the Brandenburg Gate, Hard Rock Cafe, Checkpoint Charlie, Imax, some souvenir shops, Dunkin' Donuts ("a must when visiting Berlin"), and visited my host grandpa's 95-year-old mother.
I don't really have any good pictures from the trip, except from the famous currywurst stand.
So that was the rest of 2011, plus a little bit from January. Six more weeks and I'll be back in America already.