Monday, December 19, 2011

Feliz Navidad Chocolate Cookies

Holiday baking (round 1) got into full swing 2 weekends ago at my house.  I make cookies like mad and Hubby is my kitchen elf/helper.  We put together cookie boxes for co-workers, friends and family.  It's become an annual tradition.  I have a couple of cookies that are a must make every year--Ginger Snaps and Raspberry and Lemon Linzers.   I have some cookies that rotate in and out each year, like Chocolate Chip Candy Cane, Chocolate Truffle Cookies, Cream Wafers and Cake Truffles.  I am always looking for new cookies to add to the rotating roster. 

When I was assigned Eliot's Eats for this month's Secret Recipe Club assignment I immediately went in search of cookies.  Luckily her site features several cookie recipes including an annual 12 days of Christmas.  When I spotted the Feliz Navidad Chocolate Cookies I thought they would be a fun twist on a standard chocolate cookie.  These cookies definitely have a little spicy punch with cinnamon, pepper and cayenne.  The cookies are soft and chewy with a chocolately bite.  I love the dusting of powdered sugar on top.  They made it into round 2 of the holiday cookie boxes. 

Secret Recipe Club is like Secret Santa for blogs.  Each month each participant is assigned another participant's blog....and it's a secret!  You browse the blog you are assigned and then choose something to make and blog it.   It's a great way to discover new blogs.  I enjoyed browsing Eliot's Eats.  It's a great blog focused on local eating, inspired by Barbara Kingsolver's journey with eating locally as documented in her book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (a great book by the way).  I saw several recipes on Eliot's eats that will be checking back on, including several canning recipes when the spring and summer months are upon us.
But for now I just have to gear up for the third and final round of the cookie craziness next weekend.  And squeeze in some last minute shopping.

Are you all ready for the holidays?  

Feliz Navidad Chocolate Cookies
from Eliot's Eats originally adapted from Tim Love

1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch of black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons butter, room temperature
3 tablespoons shortening
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/4 cup powdered sugar for dusting (or more if needed)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.  In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and pepper and set aside.  In a stand mixer cream butter and shortening on medium speed.  Add in sugars and beat on medium speed until fluffy, about 1 minute.  Turn mixer to low and add in eggs one at a time and vanilla until fully combined.  Add in dry ingredients in batches until incorporated. 

Scoop out 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoon size balls with a spoon or cookie scoop place cookies about 1 inch apart on the parchment lined baking sheet.  Bake for 12 to 14 minutes (my were done at 12) until set.  Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet and transfer to a wire rack to finish cooking.  Dust with powdered sugar.


  1. Wow---I feel so honored that you picked this cookie. Thanks for checking out last year's "12 Days of Christmas Treats." I love this cookie but unfortunately haven't revisited them this year. Thanks again for the kind words and perusing my site. I will reciprocate!
    Happy Holidays!

  2. They look really pretty and very Christmas'y :-)

  3. I seriously just drooled a bit. Yum!

  4. Great pick...being from San Antonio, I love it when spice is added to chocolate! These look wonderful!!

  5. I love the heavy dusting of powdered sugar on the top of these cookies - they're so pretty! I am so not ready for the holidays. My shopping is nearly done, but I haven't even started baking yet. Need to get going soon!

  6. What a beautiful cookie! And I love the little pinch of cayenne in this recipe. And of course the powdered sugar! Your photos are just wonderful!

  7. What a stunning cookie! Just wish I had one right now. Glad to be part of SRC with you. Happy Holidays!!

  8. Chocolate cookies with a 'punch', I like that! I do love cookies, these look yummy. Have a great Holiday Season.

  9. I love Eliot's Eats, it's one of my favorite blogs. You can't go wrong picking any recipes from her site!

  10. Perfect choice for Christmas. Perfect choice for SRC...great post! Merry Christmas :)

  11. When I get a chocolate craving this is just the kind of recipe I look for. Love that little pinch of cayenne pepper to give it a good kick. Happy holidays.

  12. Oh, yum! I love chocolate cookies with a little spice! I have had to work a lot recently, which has made it hard to get into the holiday spirit or have time to bake. My Christmas baking may happen after Christmas - I will have tons of great recipes to choose from at least.

    Happy holidays to you and your family!

  13. Oooo, love the pinch of cayenne in there. I need to get some more cookies made, these are on the list!