Final Idea + Recipe:
Orange Almond Coffee Shortbread Cookies
Butter — 1/2 cup
Sugar — 1/4 cup
Flour — 1 cup
Crushed Almonds — 1/8 cup
Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice — 3–4 Tbsp.
Instant Coffee — 1 Heaping Tbsp.
Preheat Oven to 350 degrees
Combine butter and sugar — beat until fluffy
Add coffee, almonds, and orange juice — stir
Mix in flour until you have dough consistency
Create a dough ball
Roll out dough
Cut dough into desired shapes
Bake for 10–15 minutes
I brainstormed for awhile and asked friends and family to help come up with ideas as well. Immediately thought of shortbread and peanut butter cookies because those are two of my favorite kinds (besides a classic chocolate chip) and neither have very many ingredients, so I thought they would be easy to add to or play around with.
Idea #1 Test:
Spicy Cinnamon Apple Peanut Butter Cookies
→ Instead of just cinnamon apple, I decided to twist the flavors towards a ‘spicy’ cinnamon by using spicy cinnamon fireball candies. I added crushed candies as well as dried apple pieces to a base peanut butter cookie dough recipe.
It was horrible. To be quite frank, they tasted like vomit. I wasn’t sure where I was going to go with that one to improve it, so I basically abandoned that idea.
Idea #2 Test:
Mint Orange Almond Coffee Shortbread Cookies
→ Sticking with the theme of using candies, I added crushed starlight mints as well as crushed almonds, fresh squeezed juice from an orange, and coffee to a base shortbread cookie dough recipe.
That was a lot to add, so I’m not exactly sure how I was expecting any kind of great results. (Spoiler: The results weren’t great)
They weren’t as awful as the peanut butter cookies, though, so I decided to keep trying with this one.
Although my original attempt at the shortbread cookies wasn’t too great, what was really screwing them up was just the mint candies. Although (according to the internet) orange and mint flavors are supposed to mix well together, the sugary candy wasn’t adding the right kind of mint flavor. Also, the textures of the almond pieces and candy pieces added too much crunch to the cookies and basically ruined everything that wasn’t already tasting bad.
I decided to try making the cookie again, this time just removing the mint candies altogether. I found that the crushed almonds alone added a subtle but still noticeable crunchy texture in the cookies. The almond and coffee flavors mixed well, and the very slight hint of orange was an interesting surprise when eating the cookies (even my roommate agreed they weren’t too bad).
Honestly, I won’t say they were the best cookies I’ve ever had — nor will I probably ever make them again. But they are a pretty interesting mix of flavors and textures and are definitely something new.
Thursday 9/7 → Brainstorming/Idea Generation
Friday 9/8 → Brainstorming/Idea Generation + Buying ingredients etc.
Saturday 9/9 → Idea testing
Sunday 9/10 → Idea testing and iteration, make final batch???
Monday 9/11 & Tuesday 9/12 → Blog post work and final touches, make final batch (if not made Sunday)