Monday, April 21, 2014

Mexican Hot Cocoa Thumbprint Cookies with Spicy Dulce de Leche

I cannot believe we are so close to it being May. Seriously. Where did this year go? I feel like it was just a couple months ago that I was finishing my semester in Spain and getting ready for my travel adventures across Europe. It's been almost a whole year already since then!

In just a few short weeks I finish my undergrad and graduate! Then four days after graduation I fly to Israel! AHH. I will be doing a 10 day Birthright-Taglit trip, and staying an extra week afterwards to travel around with my sister and friends. To fast forward to then (past final exams, projects, papers...wahhh) would be absolutely wonderful.

This month we are making Cinco de Mayo cookies for the Creative Cookie Exchange! I figured, chocolate, cayenne, cinnamon, dulce de leche...where can ya go wrong?

I've always been intrigued by making cookies with hot chocolate mix, so I thought I could incorporate the Mexican-Chocolate flavors with these guys as thumbprints. The dough was definitely a different texture than normal cookie dough, but they worked just fine with extra chilling in the freezer.

The cookies are slightly fluffy in texture, and while the cinnamon and cayenne are not overwhelming flavors against the chocolate, the tingle from the pepper definitely builds up with each bite. Such a fun way to literally spice up plain chocolate!


Cookies- Adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod
1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate
2 cups flour
1/4 cup hot cocoa mix
1 1/2 tsp cayenne
2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup brown sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla

In a small saucepan, melt the butter on low heat. Add the chocolate, and stir with a rubber spatula until melted. Set aside to cool for a few moments.

In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa, cayenne, cinnamon, baking powder and salt.

In your stand mixer, beat the sugar and eggs on medium-high until creamy. Add in the vanilla and mix until combined. Then add the dry ingredients and mix on low, adding the chocolate/butter as you mix until everything is incorporated. Be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Chill the dough in the fridge for at least an hour or overnight.

Using a teaspoon, portion out the dough and roll into balls, place them a parchment lined cookie sheet. Using your pinkie make a deep well in the center of each cookie. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Chill in the freezer for about 20 minutes before baking. Bake for 6-10 minutes until set. Let chill on a wire rack before filling.

Spicy Dulce de Leche Filling-
1 can Dulce de Leche (or homemade)
1 tsp cayenne
1 tsp cinnamon

In a small saucepan, combine all the ingredients and cook on low until a nice texture for filling the cookies (smooth, but not too runny). Using a small ziploc or piping bag, fill your mini thumbprints with the Dulce de Leche, and 'garnish' how you like (I just drizzled over some melted chocolate chips).

There ya go. Even with this awful cold I have, I can taste the hints of cinnamon and cayenne verse the chocolate. Super tasty and tingly. :D

The theme this month is Cinco de Mayo - and what better way to celebrate than baking cookies! Creative Cookie Exchange has decided to stop using the linky. What this means is that the only way to join in the fun is to become a host. Just contact Laura at thespicedlife AT gmail DOT com and she will get you added to our Facebook group, where we discuss our cookies and share links.

You can also just use us as a great resource for cookie recipes--
be sure to check out our Facebook page, our Pinterest Board, and our monthly posts. 
You will be able to find them the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month!


Here's what the other cookie creators have been up to for Cinco de Mayo:

  • Mexican Chocolate Wedding Cookies from Stacy at Food Lust People Love
  • Polvorones con Chocolate from Laura The Spiced Life
  • Feast Day Cookies from Felice at All That’s Left Are The Crumbs
  • Margarita Cookies from Tara at Noshing With The Nolands
  • Cinnamon Coffee Meringue Cookies from Kim at NinjaBaking
  • Cinnamon and Piloncillo Cookies from Renee at Magnolia Days
  • Chocolate Chilli Roll Out Cookies from Jill at Made with Love
  • Dulce de Leche Alfajores from Holly at A Baker’s House
  • Triple Orange Mexican Cookies from Karen at Karen’s Kitchen Stories
  • Ducle de Leche Cookie Bars from Kathya at Basic N Delicious

    1. Your cookies look and sound just fabulous.

    2. What an exciting time for you ahead with graduation and a big trip. Best wishes to you! And I love your cookies kicked up with spices and filled with that glorious dulce de leche.

    3. Congratulations on your upcoming graduation, Sophie, and have a wonderful trip to Israel! I spent two weeks there last year with my mother and we had the best time. I'd go back in a heartbeat! Your cookies look absolutely wonderful! I love that you added cinnamon and cayenne to the dulce de leche filling.

    4. Great idea to add some spice to the dulce de leche filling. What an exciting few months you have ahead of you-- enjoy!

    5. Love the sweet spicy heat that these cookies would have!! I made a chocolate cake like that once and won a contest where they flew me to Toronto to film a you tube video and got $1000. That was exciting, I would love to try your gorgeous cookies!!

      1. Wow! That sounds like such a fun time. Thanks Tara! :)

    6. A tingle of cayenne sounds very intriguing indeed, Sophie. And the dulce de leche drizzle looks divine! Congratulations on graduation =)

    7. Oh my goodness Sophie! These look so beautiful and delicious. Congratulations on your degree too! What an accomplishment.

    8. These cookies look delicious, and I would not be able to stop at one. Congratulations on a wonderful achievement, and hope graduation hurries up so you can go on your trip.

    9. LOVE the dulce de leche in a thumbprint cookie! I am totally trying that!