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Best Sandwich Cookie 

Oreo at Homeroom

Even before she opened Oakland mac 'n' cheese restaurant Homeroom with Erin Wade at the beginning of 2011, Allison Arevalo had a thing for rehabbing mass-market comfort foods. On her Local Lemons blog, the Brooklyn-to-Berkeley transplant did a series called Fast Food Slow, reimagining things like stuffed-crust pizza and chicken nuggets — even the Big Mac — as real foods made with quality local ingredients. The same spirit animates Homeroom's oreo, a pair of dark chocolate wafers stuffed with a credible simulacrum of that famous crème filling. In what may be a sly comment on the hypertension-stoking sodium content in processed foods, Wade and Arevalo top their confection with a sprinkling of coarse sea salt. Then again, maybe the salt just helps make the oreo taste like an Oreo. Whatever the reason, Homeroom's owners have our respect, and not just because they know how to put together a delicious cookie. Considering they had to abandon "Little Mac" — Homeroom's original name— after lawyers for McDonald's turned up the heat, naming the oreo after the Kraft Foods favorite (even with that lowercase O) was a bold move.

(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)

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