starts out as a little germ of an idea. like most great things it’s batted back and forth across a net of creativity with like-minded souls. i’m sure some people think that it’s a solo endeavor with one cook standing alone in a kitchen, notebook in hand and a ton of flour everywhere. and this is, of course, part of the equation. but it’s also a wonderfully cool way to collaborate and make something special happen. just like writing a wonderful song, there’s more than one person involved that helps makes it go from good to great.
so what happens before the cook ever puts the apron on? first, there is always inspiration. it can be from a childhood memory, from a recent restaurant excursion, from a cookbook you can’t put down or from a tv show you watch in an effort to learn and grow.
i was recently asked by my dear friend kristen butler and amazing photographer manny to collaborate on a cookie recipe. the client (who had just awarded manny’s blog the best food photography award for 2012) wanted a holiday cookie recipe. when they asked if i could help out with it and collaborate on the recipe, i said, but of course, yes! have they not been reading my blog and goals for 2012 (saying yes being the biggest one)?
the idea was to take a cuban lad’s snack memory and turn it into a cookie. after a couple of emails between the three of us we settled on a modern twist of a classic cuban cookie. we discussed not only the kind of cookie, (shortbread), but the style (scalloped), the topping (guava paste and cream cheese with a sprinkling of fleur de sel), and what would pair well with it (a cup of hot tea).
the final result is gorgeous and frightfully dainty. but most importantly, it’s delicious and a perfect example of how an original recipe is born.