You want more chocolate goodness? Well so do I, and I like my chocolate hot!
Yesterday Bindy and I finally made the brunch I've been planning ever since my sister gave me a churerra for christmas. We had churros and thick dark cinnamon hot chocolate. Churros are one of my favourite types of donuts. I think the translation that the churrera gave of "extruded fritte-finger" doesn't quite do justice to these long crisp fried delights. Ours weren't perfect, being a little too crunchy and not quite moist enough in the middle but they were pretty damn fine. Washed down with some excellent thick spicy hot chocolate they were a feasty brunch.
Anyway, for those of you who aren't lucky enough to have a churrera, or who don't want to be deep frying, I thought I'd include another excellent way to eat chocolate with a latin touch.
I first got excited about chocolate with chilli when I tried Charmaine's choc-chilli ice cream way back in high school. It was a hot fave for over a decade and I remain devoted to this taste combination, even as it has gone mainstream. (witness the chocolate chilli Tim Tams if you will.)
These cookies are a bit of a pain to make, mainly because they need flipping over, but they're not difficult and they are extremely popular. On a long car trip to Lismore one summer Camilla managed to polish off a few dozen in the front seat before the rest of us had even had seconds. Luckily it makes close to 12 dozen cookies.
This recipe is adapted from Mexico: The Vegetarian Table, a book well worth finding.
Chocolate Chilli Cookies
- 270g dark chocolate
- 1/4 cup water
- 4 cups flour
- 1/2 cup cocoa
- 2 tsp pure chilli powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp cayenne
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 12 tbsps butter (1 1/2 sticks)
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup pure icing sugar
Melt the chocolate over a double boiler. Set aside. Sift together the flour, cocoa, chilli, cinnamon, cayenned and salt. Set aside. Using electric beaters if you have them, beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla in a large bowl. Beat in the eggs and water then the chocolate. Add the dry ingredients in a few batches, beating it really well after each addition. It should make a pretty solid but slightly moist dough.
Divide the dough into 4 equal parts. On a lightly floured surface roll each into a big brown poo of a log – it should be about 12 inches long and 1 1/2 inches high. Place the logs on a tray, cover with a plastic bag or something and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to 2 – they need to be firm but not hard or the next bit won’t work.
When ready to bake preheat yr oven to 350F. Slice the dough logs into 1/4 inch slices and arrange on ungreased baking trays. Bake them until they go a bit lighter and are crusty around the edges – 6 minutes. Now take them out and, trying not to burn yourself, flip them over. Bake for another 8 minutes or until they’re not wet in the middle. You might want to undercook them a bit for extra chew - or try different timings on different batches and see what you like.
In any case, when you think they're done remove 'em from the oven and let them cool on the tray for 5 minutes before moving to a plate. Sift the icing sugar over them. (I normally skip that bit). These keep fairly well in a airtight cookie jar if you want to take them to school for play lunch or something.