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3 DIY Quarantreats: AZ Baking Company

3 Quarantreats made from Tucson's desert landscape. What began as a personal challenge to make flour from the mesquite tree in his front yard, Alan Kohler crafted into a beautifully local business plan. Cookie Inventor (and previously chef), Kohler seeks to support Tucson's **LOCAL community by sourcing *LOCAL* ingredients. Two main ingredients send this cookie lightyears ahead of Nestlé's. The mequite flour is thanks to the local Tohono O'odham tribe. Having harvested mesquite tree beans for nearly 4,000 years in the region, their San Xavier Co-op Farm makes the grains into flour. Part two of the mix grows inside of BKW Farms in nearby Marana, AZ. Their Sonoran White Wheat is sustainably grown and milled on site. Together, the mixture of flours, create the magic that is Kohler's Mesquite Chocolate Chip cookie mix. Of all the desserts I have ever eaten, or written of, these cookies are the greatest result of "loving local." Now taste them!

DIY #1 FOR YO-SELF: Mesquite Cookie Dough Ice Cream

-Some cookie doughs lack flavor. AZ Baking Company ruined many a dinner this week! Hah. As their dough lacked NOTHING! My entire household barely allowed me to get any dough into the oven at all! Simply stir up the Mesquite Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix (with the suggested butter, egg, and vanilla,) Next pluck your favorite ice cream out of the freezer. Let it SOFTEN. I did not and have a newfound appreciation for the ice-cream-SLAYERS at local shops. They can expect my tip to double next time!

DIY #2 FOR GUESTS TO IMPRESS: Mesquite-Pecan Chocolate Chip Cookies and Dalgona Coffee

- My dream: to be an inkeeper of a hyper-local and quaint mountain lodge. This pairing is what my welcome treat to guests would look like. Whiskey-drinking men and sugar-laden maidens, could agree on this cookie. The flavors are complex with malty tones. Reminiscent of a Sonoran-Desert rain. Then familiar again with a touch of sweetness found in the chips. Burly men would brag about surviving this latte. The whack of caffeine this sticky-sweet coffee provides, has the power to wake up Sleeping Beauty from the dead. Or help a modern-day princess cram for 72 hour during finals week, fully alert.

Again bake the cookies adhereing to the simple steps on the bag. Just add bits of pecans this time. Dalgona requires: 2TBSP Boiling hot water, 2TBSP Instant coffee, + 2TBSP Sugar. Whip it together for 4-5 minutes until baby-peaks form. DO NOT attempt to mix this by hand. It could cramp up a pro-baker. Carefully spoon the cloud of coffee over the milk of your choice. Then dip you breakfast *cough, cough* I mean cookie, into it. Nom. Nom. Nom.

DIY #3 FOR PARTIES AND POTLUCKS: Mesquite Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

- Smash the "Easy Button" and make these ice cream cookie-wiches! For added flair, roll them through sprinkles, chopped pistachios, whatever you have on hand. Festive and nearly no-prep for parties. (Virtual) summer potlucks, here we come! I made the Mesquite Chocolate Chipcookies according the package. Cut the ice cream into oval-ish shapes, and rolled through the sprinkles. I chose Supernatural Rainbow Starfetti. Their sprinkles are joyful without the artificial gunk.

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