Tuesday, January 7, 2020

New Girl Scout Lemon-Ups are a Happy Tie to the Past.

What, am I seriously going to write about a cookie? Why yes, yes I am. Because this year's new cookie from the Girl Scouts takes me back to my favorite cookie of all time - the Jackson Jumble.

My daughter's a Girl Scout. Hunter joined a couple of years ago and has really dived in with both feet, finding a perfect place in her troop and having adventures and experiences that she treasures.

This photo was taken on her 11th birthday earlier this year, when we worked the phones during an AETN pledge drive one night.

The reason I mention this is, Hunter's Girl Scout status meant I had a chance to try something before it went public here. When we sat down to talk about Girl Scout cookie sales for the year, her troop leader brought out a container with samples of the brand new Lemon-Ups cookies - and shared. 

Lemon-Ups are the new no-high fructose corn syrup, no trans-fat lemon-flavored shortbread style cookies on the order form this year. You can check here to see what's in them and all the nutritional details.

And they taste just like a Jackson Jumble. You remember, the soft lemon cookies available around these parts up until about a decade ago, with the tiny hole in the middle? They weren't too sweet, just delightful, slightly fluffy round cookies, and as a child the way my friends and I would eat them was with our pinkies through the hole, seeing who could eat the entire cookie without it falling off when the center was breeched.

Jackson Lemon Jumbles were the creation of the Jackson Cookie Company, a North Little Rock original that opened way back in 1933. The company's other creation, crispy perfect vanilla wafers, are still to be found (particularly at some Sunbeam bakeries and sometimes at Kroger) but when the factory closed in January 2004, the Lemon Jumble recipe apparently wasn't passed on to another company. Murray Biscuit Company makes the Jackson vanilla wafer, by the way, and I'm hoping the company's recent acquisition by Fererro Group (yes, THAT Fererro Group) might spark a resurrection of my Jumbles.

That all being said, these adorable cookies, each marked with an inspirational phrase, bear that almost undeniable flavor. They're a little different in consistency, being a bit more dense and a little more firm. But they come closer to what I remember than anything else.

Lemon-Ups, like all other Girl Scout Cookies this year, will sell at $5 a box. Yes, that's a bit more than your average box of cookies. But when you purchase Girl Scout Cookies, you aren't just getting the cookies. You're helping Scouts achieve their dreams. About a quarter of each sale goes to the baker - another 21 percent comes to the troop for incentives, badges and such.  The rest - 54 percent - goes to programs, training, scholarships, and so much more. All the money remains in council - none goes to the nationwide Girl Scout USA organization. It's all for our Girl Scouts Diamonds council to utilize.
Hunter's aim is to earn enough to pay for camp this year. She'll be out with her troop at cookie booths in a few weeks, but come Friday, her Digital Cookie page will be active so you can order - and even have them delivered straight to your door. You'll also be able to order cookies for donation - which is a really good option if, heaven forbid, you can't have cookies but would like others to enjoy them.

So whether you've been craving that old Jackson Lemon Jumble flavor all these years, or you'd like to help girls achieve their goals and dreams, keep an eye out for Lemon-Ups this cookie season.

One more thing - this isn't an advertisement. No one's paying me to talk about this, and I'm not benefiting personally from sharing about the similarity between Jackson Lemon Jumbles and Girl Scout Lemon-Up Cookies. Yes, if you end up ordering cookies from my daughter, she'll benefit a bit. Full disclosure, right there.

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