Changing the fate with almond cookies

The wait is over – almond cookies are here ! Lavinia, Willa, Ryosuke and I had our baking class this afternoon. If you didn’t read my previous post, this was to be a class for both, the women who started the cooperative and us. We learn how to bake real  Moroccan cookies, they learn to provide baking classes to tourists or foreign women so they can expand their offerings and make more money at no marginal cost, so pure profit. We wanted to do a test as to how it would work, so the 3 of us were the guinea pigs and Ryo was the photographer (we will make a basic brochure for them).

It worked out great even though they spoke no English and we spoke no Arabic – there was some basic French but mostly lots of smiles, hand gestures and pointing. The recipe turned out to be for flourless almond cookies – I got so excited that they can target gluten free customers (clearly a 1st world problem as they had no idea what I was talking about) Didn’t matter to me, the more marketing angles, the better. Our focus was on making it a real Moroccan experience for the tourists so tried to give them advice on the cultural pieces that are unique and people enjoy – putting on headscarf as you walk in, putting on the leather shoes they wear here, having Arabic music in the background, having the story of their business written down, their names to make it personable, mint tea to get through the oven time and some pre-done cookies ready so they can sell more. Willa suggested a picture story to show them the steps and a little language leaflet for basic phrases.


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45 mins later – I really hope we helped them get the idea started. For the real foodies/no sugar folks, I am pretty sure you can swap the refined sugar for other raw sugar types. I loved their excitement and generous hunger for learning something new – but they were very timid to ask for any money or didn’t know how they would market this service or even price it; they also don’t want to take any pictures. Did you notice the size of the almond grinder? I don’t grind almonds much but have a bigger machine at home (significantly underutilized). And they do mass production with that little thing. Hopefully, with the pictures we took, we can put together a little brochure, pamphlet, distribution and make this THE baking school for tourists in Tangier.

If you were a tourist, would you go and learn how to make cookies with them? What would make it a fabulous, authentic experience for you? How much would you pay for it? #ibmcsc


  1. Misha, to make it more authentic I would like to know if they could serve tea or an authentic local beverage to drink while we are baking the cookies? I like the way they are packaging them to take home. Though they do not necessarily like or think about the pictures, that is a huge part of the experience – being able to capture the moment to share. Your pictures really were wonderful to see. About how long were you there?


    • Sharon, thanks so much for your feedback. We were there for about 40 minutes. I agree with the pictures, that’s key and they need to think thru it. And yes on the mint tea – absolutely a must while we wait or some other local custom. Appreciate the virtual help to make it work! And that someone is reading it….


  2. Key to Asian tourists (and I’m sure Ryosuke will agree!) – is the actual package of cookies. The cookies are probably perishable? And they don’t have access to make these cookies last to go home…? So, how about recipes in different languages? or nice container so that the container lasts while the cookies do not… and yes, mint tea!


  3. Very attractive presentation, makes me hungry! My suggestion would be to come up with a catchy name for each type of cookie and a label. If you make the package attractive, authentic and colorful, people will buy them as gifts and keepsakes, even if they don’t like cookies!


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