Fall baking is here! I have attacked my first truly fall-inspired recipe. I know Halloween is fast approaching, however for some reason this year I feel more inspired by Day of the Dead (November 1) than Halloween.
For those unfamiliar, Day of the Dead (or Día de los Muertos) is a holiday, most notably celebrated in Mexico, that remembers those friends and family who have died. Despite what some may see as a morbid day, the celebrations and remembrances have beautiful and bright colors, intricately decorated sugar skulls and masks, lots of marigolds, and tons of food. Day of the Dead is not a day of sadness or mourning, but of happy memories. Offerings, gifts, and tributes are left at the graves of those who have died or at small altars in private homes. It’s always fun for me to learn about the traditions of other cultures and Day of the Dead is no exception – the festivities as well as the willingness to regard death as more than a sad occasion are both very interesting.
In this vein, I made Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies. Mexican chocolate is traditionally spiced with cinnamon and pepper, and that is no exception in this recipe. The flavors are subtle but you can tell there is something more than just chocolate. Enjoy these cookies as a flavorful nod to the Day of the Dead!
Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies
source: The Busty Baker
2 ¼ c all purpose flour
½ c unsweetened cocoa powder
2 t cream of tartar
1 t baking soda
½ t coarse salt
2 t ground cinnamon, divided
½ t ground chipotle chile
1 c (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 ¾ c sugar, divided
2 large eggs
1 t vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Line two standard baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
- In a medium bowl sift together flour, cocoa powder, cream of tartar, baking soda, salt, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and ¼ teaspoon ground chipotle chile.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and 1 ½ cups sugar on medium speed until fluffy, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add vanilla and combine. Reduce speed to low and add flour mixture, beat to combine.
- In a small bowl, combine remaining ¼ cup sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and ¼ teaspoon ground chipotle.
- Form dough into balls and roll in cinnamon sugar mixture to coat. Place on prepared baking sheets, spacing 3 inches apart. Bake until cookies begin to crack, about 10-12 minutes. Let cookies cool on sheets for 5 minutes before transferring cookies to wire racks to cool completely.
Makes about 40 cookies
Calories: 100 per cookie