Tag Archives: chocolate

Spicy Chocolate Cookies

Spicy Chocolate CookiesI was flipping through my vast cookbook collection, looking for a new recipe to try.  I’m getting pretty bored with my usual lineup so it’s time to get creative.  I came across a recipe for chocolate cookies with a touch of cayenne pepper in The Doughmakers Cookbookby Bette Laplante and Diane Cuvelier.  Hmm, this should be an interesting new adventure! Charlie is ready for the adventure…here he is wearing his new winter hat:
Charlie's New HatThe recipe only calls for 1/4 tsp. of cayenne pepper which doesn’t seem like a lot in the grand scheme of things.  I baked a test cookie to see if I wanted to make any changes to the flavoring before I continued.  After the first bite I didn’t even taste the pepper.  I was about to add more pepper to the batter.  How can I call them spicy and not deliver a spicy cookie?!  Then I ate the rest of the cookie and there it was.  A subtle but detectable hint of heat in the back of my throat.  I’m glad I didn’t add more!
Spicy Chocolate Cookies and MilkAn ice cold glass of milk pairs well with these cookies.  It helps with the spiciness as well as the rich chocolate explosion.  Look how fudgy they come out.
Spicy Chewy Chocolate CookiesThese cookies are chewy, sweet, and chocolaty with a mild kick at the end.  They actually remind me of those red hots candies.  This recipe is also good for people on a diet because it is hard to eat a lot of them in one sitting!  Here is my altered recipe.  The original recipe called for butter, but I tweaked it so that it would be dairy free.

Spicy Chocolate Cookies
Serves: About 5 Dozen
  • ½ cup (1 stick) margarine, melted
  • 4 Tbs. vegetable shortening, melted
  • ⅔ cup cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup plus ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tsp. cinnamon
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • ¾ cup semisweet chocolate chips
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Measure the cocoa powder and place into the bowl of an electric stand mixer.
  3. Melt the margarine and shortening and carefully pour into the cocoa powder.
  4. Using a paddle attachment with the mixer on low, mix the cocoa, margarine, and shortening until smooth.
  5. Add in ¾ cups of each granulated and brown sugars.
  6. Mix on low until incorporated.
  7. Add in the eggs and vanilla.
  8. Once the mixture is smooth, add in the flour, baking soda, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, and salt. Mix well.
  9. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  10. Form the dough into 1 inch balls and roll in the ⅓ cup sugar.
  11. Place the cookies on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes until the tops are cracked. They will be soft, don't overbake!
  12. Let the cookies cool completely before transferring to a cooling rack or the cookies will break.

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Non-Dairy Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

When my friend Andrea needed a better recipe for chocolate crinkle cookies, she asked me for mine.  I was almost embarrassed to tell her that I had never made them before!  The recipe she has is great but it’s messy; the dough is too sticky and is hard to work with.  I asked her for the recipe so I could try it for myself.  The original recipe comes from Kosher by Design Short on Time cookbook.  The recipe is non-dairy and calls for oil instead of butter.  I realized that the oil is causing the cookie dough to be too sticky so I replaced the oil with vegetable shortening and was so happy that I did!  The dough was perfect, no need to refrigerate it before working with it.

naked chocolate crinkle cookies

I don’t like recipes that require “thinking ahead”…who has time?  This dough gets mixed together and it’s ready to go.  Using a cookie scoop, measure out the dough and roll it into a perfect ball.  Then roll it in granulated sugar.

chocolate crinkle dough in granulated sugar

Once it is completely coated, roll it in confectioners sugar.

chocolate crinkle in confectioners sugar

Shake off the excess sugar.

shake shake

It looks good enough to eat already!  Hold yourself back-it’s worth it.  Line the cookies up on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake at 350°F for 8-10 minutes until they are cracked and puffy.

chocolate crinkle cookies fresh from the oven

Allow the cookies to cool for a few minutes on the cookie sheet; they are too soft to transfer to a cooling rack.  You can also slide the whole sheet of parchment paper onto a cooling rack.  Let them cool completely before sampling these gems.

cooling cookies

Rolling the dough in granulated sugar helps the confectioners sugar stick better and keeps it from melting, giving the cookie this great look.  The black and white contrast is gorgeous.

chocolate crinkle cookies all in a row

They look so perfect and professional and are so easy to make!  Pile them up and serve them to your friends and family.

stacked chocolate crinkle cookies

These cookies freeze really well.  I like to eat them straight from the ice box!

fudgy biteLook how fudgy they are.  Yum!  My son Charlie couldn’t get his tiny hands on a cookie, but he did get a hold of this cute ribbon…

Charlie playing with ribbonWill you try this recipe?  It’s non-dairy, easy and delicious!

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies
Serves: About 5 Dozen
  • ½ cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup confectioners sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper or wax paper and set aside.
  3. In a medium size bowl sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt together and set aside.
  4. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer with the paddle attachment, add the shortening and sugar and mix.
  5. Add the eggs in one at a time and beat until combined.
  6. Add in the vanilla.
  7. Carefully add in the dry ingredients and with the mixer on low speed, mix until combined.
  8. Prepare the sugars. Fill one small bowl with ¼ cup granualted sugar and another small bowl with ½ cup confectioners sugar.
  9. Using a small cookie scoop, scoop the dough and roll into 1 inch balls.
  10. Then roll each ball first in the granulated sugar and then in the confectioners sugar. Make sure to shake off any excess.
  11. Place the dough on the parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes until tops are cracked. Allow to cool completely before transferring.

Strawberries Dressed to the Nines

When the weather heats up, the last thing I want to do is heat up my oven and bake.  How do I satisfy my chocolate fix during the hot and humid New York summer?  Chocolate covered strawberries!  Just thinking about red, juicy strawberries enrobed in sweet, velvety chocolate makes my mouth water.

chocolate covered strawberries

I love using long stemmed strawberries but they are not always available.  These are just regular strawberries dipped in melted milk chocolate.  I melted the chocolate using the double boiler method.  If you have never done this, it’s simple!  Fill a pot with an inch or so of water and over low heat bring to a simmer.  Then place a heatproof bowl on top of the pot.  Make sure the bowl is not too small, it shouldn’t fall into the pot, you should be able to remove the bowl easily.  The steam that hits the bottom of the bowl will gently melt the chocolate.  Be careful because the bowl will get hot.  If you want to dress up the classic chocolate dipped strawberry, melt some white chocolate and drizzle it on top once the milk chocolate is set and dry.

White Chocolate Drizzle

Not so confident in your drizzling abilities?  Here is my new favorite idea.  Crush up some pretzels.  First dip the strawberry in chocolate and then immediately in the pretzels. These are ridiculously good!  The sweet and salty combination is divine.

Pretzel Covered Strawberries

If your strawberries are invited to a black tie event you might want to try these.  What is cuter than a strawberry in a tiny tuxedo?

Strawberry Tuxedos

These are a little more difficult to do.  The best strawberries to use are big and flat.  The bigger the better (and easier).  First dip the strawberries in melted white chocolate.

White Chocolate Covered Strawberries

They are delicious just like this!  They can also be drizzled with milk chocolate or dipped in crushed pretzels.  However, if you want them to wear tiny tuxedos, allow them to dry completely.  Then tilt the strawberry to one side and dip it in milk chocolate.  Then do the same for the other side.

Step TwoThe last step is to add the buttons and bow tie.  Fill a pastry bag fitted with a tiny round tip and fill with melted chocolate.  Pipe three buttons and two triangles for a bow tie.

All Dressed Up!

I bet you could use an edible food coloring marker to draw on the buttons and bow tie, but I haven’t tried it.  Let me know if you try it!

PS-What is your favorite no bake dessert?