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Chocolate - Ancho Chili cookies

(post, David Silva)

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Apart from Halloween, we also have our neighbors south of the border who celebrate La  Dia de los Muertos! I am Mexican at heart, so here is my attempt to celebrate their chocolate, my favorite chocolate from anywhere in the world. Sorry, Belgium. Don't get me wrong, I love your stuff, but Mexico is on totally different caliber. 

People, my measurements (dough-wise) were totally off for this experiment. I would not horrify you in what I tried to use as my dough ... I'm sure a lot of you have a "go to" recipe for chocolate cookies. I'd use that base, as the base almost doesn't matter. (My dough was a wee dense but the flavor was great!)

However, the changes you want to make to make your chocolate cookies "Mexican" would be to use Mexican chocolate. Chop coarsely and melt the chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of hot water. Taza brand discs are the best - you want to use 1 pack of two disks. Pick which ever flavor you wish. My favorite is cinnamon for this recipe (but for eating, I love their chili flavored disk). Also, throw in an  additional 1/4 cup of cocoa powder to whatever dough-base you are using. 

Also, throw in 1/2 to 1 tsp of dried Ancho chili powder depending on how "hot" you want your cookies. And up that cinnamon! Add an extra 1/2 tsp as these will be a spicier cookie.

I throw all my dough in a Ziplock bag and cut off one of the ends to make a "pastry bag". I wanted to pipe all these cookies so they bake even and look super cute. (On a side-note: I am reading "My Life In France" by Julia Child, and Julia never used a madeline tin. She piped them herself! Who knew? So here's to you, Julia. As ghetto as a cut Ziplock bag might be, you were in my thoughts!). I put a chocolate chip in the center of each for added appeal. 

Even if some readers add just the chili powder and extra cinnamon, I think you will enjoy a different shade of chocolate, and a different type of cookie. Happy baking!