Friday, November 28, 2014
Mexican hot chocolate cookies
I suppose my favorite time of the year is now over with the end of fall and the celebration of Thanksgiving yesterday. I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving; ours was a small gathering this year, but it was full of love and good food! Now it's time to turn all my pumpkins into puree and bring out the Christmas tree.
Christmas is my second favorite time of the year and it means that it is now the season of cookies! That's a season I can get behind. Actually, I love a lot of things about the Christmas season - snow, lighted homes, carols, eggnog, Christmas trees... I just don't love the creeping of Christmas earlier and earlier each year and the focus on gifts and spending tons of money. This year I was at a store in early October glancing through some Halloween goodies and they were already putting up Christmas decorations in the last aisle of seasonal items. You can't turn on the television without being bombarded with Christmas commercials for buying gifts - starting as earlier as the beginning of November now (we actually saw some the week of Halloween). I'm a big fan of seasons and enjoying each time of year for what it is - not rushing to the next one. So this year I'm going to try to have a simple holiday season. It will still contain a plethora of homemade holiday treats as I love to give them for gifts and have them for gatherings.
These cookies aren't a traditional Christmas cookie and can be made anytime of the year, but I like their hint of spiciness in the cold weather. If you've ever had a cup of Mexican hot chocolate, you know what I'm talking about - chocolaty, slightly sweet, with a bit of cinnamon and a touch of cayenne pepper - not enough to make them hot, but just enough to give them a touch of warmth. They are similar to these Mexican brownies that we love. This recipe will make about 30 cookies.
Mexican hot chocolate cookies
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
heaped 1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon sea salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips, divided
2 large eggs
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cayenne, and salt. Set aside.
In a small pot, heat the butter and 1/3 cup bittersweet chocolate chips over medium-low heat, whisking often until melted and combined (alternatively you can melt them together in a microwave). Set aside to cool slightly.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugars, and vanilla until well-combined. Whisk in the chocolate-butter mixture. Stir in the flour mixture until combined and then fold in the remaining chocolate chips.
Scoop the cookies a tablespoon at a time onto the baking sheets placing them one-inch apart from one another. Bake for about 9-11 minutes, or until the bottoms and edges are beginning to turn golden. Remove from the oven and let sit on the baking sheet for another minute. Then remove to a wire rack to cool. Repeat until all the dough is used.
What was I cooking one year ago?: persimmon cranberry sauce
Two years ago?: Old-fashioned pumpkin pie
Three?: slow cooker chili macaroni
4?: turkey Waldorf salad pitas