Espresso Chocolate Snowballs (December 2011 Food & Wine Magazine)
There are certain predictable categories of Christmas cookies - the cut outs with decorations, the ones that employ jam, the ones with little bits of candy cane in them, the northern European heavy spice cookie type, and the ones coated in powdered sugar. This seemed like a slightly different version of that powdered sugar ball cookie, with a nice coffee bite to it. These came together very easily, required no equipment and tasted better, in my opinion, the day after they were made.
2 sticks softened unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups finely chopped pecans
1 cup or so of confectioners' sugar to coat
- In a large bowl mix the butter, vanilla and sugar until "creamed." I usually do this in a mixer but by hand it came together well with vigorous effort. Since you are making cookies, you might as well get an arm workout in, right?
- Add the flour, cocoa, espresso powder and salt and stir until combined.
- Stir in the pecans.
- Cover the bowl and put in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 325.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, or thoroughly grease the baking sheets.
- Take a tablespoon of dough at a time and roll into circles. Put an inch or two apart on baking sheet.
- Bake for 15 minutes - the cookies should look dry and be firm to the touch.
- Let cool for ten minutes in pans, then remove to rack and let cool completely.
- Roll in the powdered sugar.