Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Sweet Heat (Chocolate Chipotle Cookies)

Hello, ladies and gents!

Sorry to keep you waiting, we took a bit of a holiday hiatus. With all the running around between San Diego, Chesapeake, and Pennsylvania, I think we needed it. Now we're back in the kitchen and I have a new treat to share:

Mountain of cookies
Ever since some friends and I first went to see Chocolat, I've loved adding chile pepper to my cocoa. These are a riff on a similar theme. I first made these cookies as an experiment, but now I'm proud to say I've mastered the recipe. These dark, crumbly chocolate cookies are spiked with a heady amount of dried chipotle, concealed beneath an innocent-looking dusting of powdered sugar.

Like so

We stayed with my sister Kelly and her husband Jonathan over Christmas and I couldn't help but be reminded of Jonathan's chocolate chile groom's cake, which wasn't really the spiciest. You can tone it down, if you like, but that shouldn't be a problem here. Jonathan got some Chile Death Sauce, now with Liquid Rage, for Christmas, so I imagine he'd prefer to double the amount.

Cooling off
 Spicy Chocolate Chipotle Cookies
Adapted from Williams Sonoma

Dried chipotle is the unexpected star performer here, but you may use Ancho or the mysteriously unspecified "chili powder," too.

1/2 c powdered sugar
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 2/3 c whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tbs ground chipotle chile
2 tsp baking powder
8 tbs (1 stick) butter
Scant 1 1/4 c turbinado sugar
2 large eggs
1 tbs pure vanilla extract
10 oz 60% cacao chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 and set aside the powdered sugar in a small bowl (more on that later). In a medium bowl, sift together the cocoa powder, flour, salt, baking powder and chipotle. Set aside.

Working the third sift
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar, then mix in the eggs, one at a time, and stir in the vanilla.

Incorporate the flour mixture into the butter mixture, stirring to combine. The result will be loose and friable, like damp sand. Don't panic.

It all comes together

Mix in the chocolate chips and use a tablespoon to scoop up dough, pack it between your hands and roll into spheres, then dredge them in powdered sugar to coat. Drop onto a baking sheet, about 2 inches apart.

Ready for deployment
Bake for 10-12 minutes, taking care they don't burn. Unlike crinkle cookies, these won't deflate, but instead remain full and round, concealing a gooey center.

Cool cookies on the baking sheet for 15 minutes, then gently remove to a wire rack and cool completely. The chipotle has a tendency to stain through the sugar, so feel free to dowse them again, restoring snowy whiteness.

Makes about 2 dozen cookies.



KJL said...

These look great. I'm sure that Jonathan would approve. He has a recipe for "diablo" cookies with ginger and cayenne that you should try!

Jp1083 said...

Those cookies sound great! I forget who makes it, but Aaron grabbed me a dark chocolate bar loaded with crystallized ginger, and I simply loved it. A dash of cayenne certainly couldn't hurt. :)