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Whoever invented the Easy Bake Oven should be forced to eat nothing but Easy Bake foods for the rest of his life. These things have been around for almost 50 years. You'd think someone would have figured out by now that it's more fun to buy some real cookie mix, bake it in the real oven, and actually eat the cookies. The stuff that comes out of that cheap plastic, light-bulb heated contraption isn't even close to food. It's like some kind of dehydrated space food from NASA.

Here is my experience with the Easy Bake Oven: Samantha wanted to make some S'mores Snacks that she got for an early Christmas gift - graham cracker cookies filled with chocolate frosting and marshmallow creme. The picture on the package looks delicious, right? So we heated up the little oven, which is nothing more than a 100-watt light bulb inside a hollow plastic box.

We followed the directions exactly. We pre-heated the oven for 15 minutes, we poured the mix into a bowl and added some water, and we made the dough for the cookies. The dough was VERY sticky and fell apart very easily. It certainly didn't look like anything you'd want to ingest. But I was still hopeful at this point. Nevermind the fact that you can only cook ONE cookie at a time!

Samantha managed to get the dough into the little pan, and she pushed it into the oven. It was supposed to cook for 8 minutes, which doesn't seem like much time for baking cookies with a light bulb. But I was only following directions. So after 8 minutes, this is what came out:

The cookie didn't rise, it didn't cook, and it didn't become edible. Samantha still wanted to press on, so she put the second cookie in the oven and began to make the chocolate frosting. This was another NASA-style dehydrated mix that she added water to.

Why they couldn't just put a pouch of Hershey's syrup in the box, I will never know. This stuff looked like used motor oil, although it did kind of smell like chocolate. It was still nothing you would actually eat, however.

Next came the marshmallow creme, another powdery mix. With added water, this stuff turned into a sticky paste that would have served a preschool art class well.

Finally, both cookies were "done," and it was time for the final product. Drum roll, please....

I made this picture large so you could see the original package in the background. It doesn't even come close, right? I didn't expect our s'mores to come out perfect, but I at least expected to be able to eat them! I wouldn't even let Samantha taste this disgusting pile of goo. She kept saying, "I wish we could just make real cookies."

Let this tale serve as a warning to anyone thinking of giving an Easy Bake Oven for Christmas. Just give them a box of real cookie mix and bake some delicious homemade cookies with them. It's much more fun, and they can actually eat it!

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