All around the world, everyone’s got their favorite dipping cookies. There’s biscotti in Italy, we’ve got our Oreos here in the States, and Australia has Tim Tams.
For whatever reason, Tim Tams, made by Arnott’s, aren’t widely available in America, though you can get them in the international aisle of at a lot of major supermarkets, or at places that otherwise specialize in imported food. I picked up this package from World Market, which has a really fun international snack section (warning: it’s not cheap). You’ll find them nestled in the biscuit section next to a random assortment of global goodies, and from the package, they just look like regular old chocolate-dipped sandwich cookies.
And yes, that’s exactly what they are. They’re crumbly and crunchy with a chocolate filling and a chocolate coating. The cocoa cookie component is almost malty and graham cracker-like, with a proper ratio of exterior coating, not too much, but definitely not too little. You’ve likely had similar cookies in your lifetime, even if you’ve never tried a Tim Tam. By themselves, they’re great and easy to house. They’re the kind of cookies you eat as a snack or pack with your lunch. So what? They’re just mass-produced cookies, Dennis. Get on with it.
But there’s something you can do with a Tim Tam that you can’t do with any other cookie, and it puts Oreos to complete and utter shame. Let me introduce you to the Tim Tam Slam.
First, make sure you’ve got a hot beverage on hand like cocoa, tea, or my personal favorite for this purpose, instant coffee. You might scoff, but come on, this isn’t a homemade cookie, it’s a manufactured biscuit covered in processed milk chocolate, and it doesn’t necessitate fancy coffee. (Don’t worry, there’s a dark chocolate Tim Tam variety out there for you fancy people). Besides, I’ve got some good memories of smelling Taster’s Choice in the house when I was growing up.
Next, make sure your drink is hot, but not scalding, cooled just to the point where you can slurp it comfortably without burning yourself.
Now, bite the opposite corners off of your biscuit, exposing the cookie layers within. Some people bite the entire sides off, but I find that things go to hell too quick if you do it that way (if you end up with a disaster you’ll know what I mean).
Taking a selfie for a story about cookies isn’t something I expected to be doing, but there’s really no good way to demonstrate this without a photo. Dip one of the nibbled-off corners into the hot beverage, and immediately start sucking on the opposite corner really hard, really fast, using your cheeks (not your lungs, unless you want a scattering of cookie crumbs inside your chest cavity). If you do it correctly, the cookie will fill up with your hot drink, and as soon as the drink hits your lips, you have under two seconds to slam that cookie in your mouth, otherwise it’s over. The whole thing collapses into an unsalvageable mess.
In a Tim Tam Slam, you are rewarded by an intense set of sensations. First, the outer chocolate melts in your mouth almost instantaneously. Next, the cookie itself melts on your tongue like a tidal wave of hot fudge, and the combined flavor of chocolate plus your drink of choice will ripple through your entire being.
I’m telling you, this is something you’ve got to try at least once during your lifetime. It sounds ridiculous and almost ceremonial in its nuances, but there’s no way you can achieve this kind of fun with an Oreo. It’s a reminder that sometimes food can not only taste good, but be entertaining at the same goddamn time.
If my instructions weren’t entirely clear, here is Natalie Imbruglia explaining the rules to Graham Norton. It’s perfect execution from beginning to end, and Norton’s expression is exactly how you’re going to look after you try this for the first time.