A classic cookie with a silly name

Insomnia Cookies’ scrumptious snickerdoodle

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Caitlin Rockett | Boulder Weekly

An upcoming move has made things hectic around my house lately. The stress of constant productivity — packing, cleaning, yet another trip to Goodwill — has led to a thorough exploration of the eateries in my neighborhood. It’s an attempt to contain the madness as much as possible… but mostly it’s a tactic to save time and precious energy.

But on some nights when there are no groceries in the house and tensions are running high after a confusingly heated discussion about whether the living room should be admiral blue or thundercloud blue, things get even lazier. When we can’t bring ourselves to even put on shoes to make the quarter-mile trek to the neighborhood Indian joint, we surrender all shame and order delivery.

One recent evening, the stress of moving merged with the stress of being a journalist with deadlines — and if I’m being frank, with the constant underlying stress of being a quasi-functional adult human being. Simple comfort was in order. Something warm, something sweet, something childlike.

In a moment of reckless abandon, free from shame or guilt or fresh fruit, I ordered a batch of cookies from Insomnia Cookies.

Insomnia started out in 2003 in a dorm room at the University of Pennsylvania. As such, the spreading chain is operated to cater to college towns full of hungry, stressed-out students looking to bliss out on some warm, comforting carbs at 2 a.m. when they realize they still don’t understand alkene transformations and that maybe pre-med isn’t the right career path.

Alternately, it seems equally well suited to calm two exhausted adults who are perfectly primed to rumble about where the forks live in the utensil drawer.

Listen, I can’t discriminate against cookie flavors because they each cater to a different cookie desire, whether that’s for the chew of an oatmeal raisin or for the warm gooey ooze of a hot chocolate chip, but nothing spoke to me like Insomnia’s snickerdoodle cookie.

Maybe I’m under the spell of the snickerdoodle’s silly name. I found a reference to “snickerdoodle” in an old Joy of Cooking book.

“Their name may be a corruption of the German word Schneckennudeln — which translates roughly as ‘crinkly noodles.’”

Wikimedia links a source that says the name might also be one in a long line of nonsensical American food name names.

“Snickerdoodle comes from a tradition of this sort that includes Graham Jakes, Jolly Boys, Branble, Tangle Breeches, and Kinkawoodle,” according to an entry in culinary resource What’s Cooking America.

Whatever the case, I love snickerdoodle cookies. Delivered hot and fresh within half an hour of placing the order, Insomnia’s version of the classic cookie with the silly name did not disappoint.

At the first bite it was difficult to place what ingredient gave these cookies their richness — was it vanilla extract? No, by the second bite it was obvious. The answer was butter — a lot of it.

Too warm and too soft to survive being picked up whole, it’s best to break pieces off of these monstrous cookies right out of the box.

And don’t worry if you forgot the milk —Insomnia can deliver that too.

Insomnia Cookies. 1203 13th St., Suite 2, Boulder, 877-632-6654.