COOKIES, AM I RIGHT?!
I first encountered Dirty Cookie at the Dessert Goals event in Los Angeles, last week. When I was told that they sold “cookie shots,” I thought they were talking about some kind of weird spin on a jello shot. Like, a small bubble of molecular gastronomy cookie dough thing with a membrane of something akin to the flavor of a chocolate chip cookie and when you bite into it, you get a mouth full of milk. The ladies behind the counter laughed and said “no, they’re shot glasses! We can put coffee or milk in them for you!” Well, now I’m thinking these are ceramic novelty glasses that look and feel like a cookie. “No, you eat it.”
You what now??
Like I mentioned in the article for Dessert Goals, I had coffee in that little cookie cup for a good amount of time, and it never got past the frosting. Didn’t dissolve the frosting, didn’t soak into it, didn’t affect the structural integrity of the glass in any actual way. This thing should be mentioned in the Insane Clown Posse song “Miracles” because it’s right up there with magnets and giraffes.
Learning more about how Dirty Cookies was founded, I was immediately very curious about many things. The founder, Shahira Marei, seen on her website with the aforementioned cookie shot glass of wonders, talks about her inspiration in creating this business from the ground up as a way to give those in need of a little help in life the break they couldn’t otherwise get. Her father told her that if she wanted to help people, she should give them jobs, and that’s what she did. She completely shifted her focus from aerospace project manager to a cookie designer, baker, and entrepreneur.
We reached out to Ms. Marei, and were lucky enough to get the answers to just a few of the questions that immediately crossed my mind after discovering this amazing company and the incredible things that she does for her local community.
Monica Scott: What a huge shift from aerospace project manager to cookie creator! What inspired that change?
- Shahira Marei: From a very young age, I’ve always wanted to have a business. When my daughter was born, it motivated me to take action and start my business. I built out the dirty cookie store front when she was 5 months old.
Monica: Did your skills in that field help you create the design for the cookie shot?
- Shahira: Yes, they definitely did. In aerospace, when you are faced with a problem, you just build your own solution and when I was creating the cookie shots, I couldn’t get the perfect shape so I had to build my own mold. Also, I learned how to manage diverse teams from my career in aerospace’s very diverse team.
Monica: What method did you use to create those things, anyways? That’s like a miracle.
- Shahira: Like I mentioned, we had to build our own custom, now patent mold. I also had to go to one of the best pastry chefs that I knew to help me develop the recipe for a soft and chewy cookie shot.
Monica: Your father was a big inspiration in your desire to help others. In what ways are you applying his advice?
- Shahira: My father taught me from a young age the importance of job opportunity for others. I work really hard to create a great work environment for my team members. He was also the main reason I wanted to have a business in the first place. He taught me that you can help a lot of people by creating businesses.
Monica: I know that this concept is amazing, and I’m sure others would love to take part. Have you ever considered franchising?
- Shahira: Yes, we do have a lot of franchise requests and we are looking to open our first partnership in Dallas, Texas next year.
Monica: Are there any new innovations in the works?
- Shahira: Yes, we are working with a client on something new and innovative, I will share it with you when it launches.
Monica: What do you see yourself doing in 5 years?
- Shahira: I see myself helping other entrepreneurs with their businesses. I love helping college students discover their passions. I see our cookie shots being very well known across the whole country.
Monica: Anything you want to add, before we go?
- Shahira: I’m also very passionate about helping women in business. As a female entrepreneur, I’ve faced a lot of challenges and want to do my part to help others.
What an amazing interview, and we thank Shahira for taking the time to talk with us. If you want to know how to get those amazing cookie shots, yourself, then head to Dirty Cookie, to find out how you can accomplish that!