Final Idea + Recipe:
My final idea is the “trail mix” cookie.
The recipe is as follows:
2 1/2 bananas (mashed)
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup peanuts
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup dried currants
1/4 cup oats
Brown bananas in oven for about 2 minutes.
Peel and mash bananas.
Add all other ingredients and stir thoroughly.
Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray.
Dollop mixture in half-fist sized onto cookie sheet.
Bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes.
To generate my ideas, I thought of foods that I like, things that go well together and things that can be baked relatively easily. I thought of a lot of different fruit ideas and savory ideas. I wanted to base my idea on something that already existed and turn it into a cookie. To start I made a base dough and tried three citrus ideas: Lemon coconut, Chocolate lime and Grapefruit cardamom. I did not keep any of these ideas because they all seemed fairly standard and did not hold the citrus flavor as well as I wanted it to.
Idea Test 1: Trail mix cookie:
I originally had the idea of combining all the things I liked in trail mix into a cookie. A few substitutions were made. M&Ms were replaced by chocolate chips and banana chips were replaced with banana making up most of the dough. Some other things that are less “standard” trail mix ingredients were added like oats, sunflower seeds and currants. The first rendition was very simple. This version had less flour than the final and was fried. Frying was intended to make them more interesting and “creative”. However, the frying resulted in a very burnt taste, but it was apparent that there was potential in the idea. Most people that reviewed it said that it had a good flavor but would be much better without the burnt taste. The idea to fix this was to turn them back into more of the “traditional” cookie model.
Idea Test 2: Squash cookie
I had an idea to use squash as the base for another cookie. I roasted the squash with some butter and brown sugar. The meat of the squash was scooped out and refrigerated. It was combined with eggs and flour to make more of a dough consistency along with some vanilla, brown sugar and cinnamon for flavor. These cookies were not used because they ended up being extremely dry. The flavor was good but a correct balance could not be found to make them dry enough to not burn but wet enough to be good to eat.
Iteration: The next batch of trail mix cookies was intended to be more of a cookie than a deep fried item. Flour and eggs were added to make the batter more of a dough-y consistency. These were baked in the over for 10 minutes unlike their cousins which yielded much better results. The thing about this batch was they had a bit more of an overpowering chocolate taste which was not what I was going for. I decided to reiterate by adding more peanuts, sunflower seeds and raisins to the next batch. This was a beautiful balance of salty, sweet and fruity. Thus, the trail mix cookie was born.
Timeline: I hope to do ideation over the first two days (having my ideas ready for Friday). On Friday, I have time to actually start making some of my ideas. I will go shopping early on Friday. I hope to make a batch of my top ideas and have it narrowed down to two by the end of the day. Over the weekend, I will iterate my top two ideas and give them to some friends/family as an initial test. Once one is declared the winner, on Sunday, I will make enough to bring to class next week for evaluation. I will have more time to make fresh cookies later in the week if needed but I hope to have them done over the weekend.