When I was eight, I learned this awesome song called Christmas Cookies for some school Christmas program or something. My mom recorded a version of it on a tape (yes, a tape, I said) for my oldest brother who was away at the time. I still remember most of the words (with my little 2 year old brother echoing along. Little bro, this transcription is for you. Be proud.)
Peanut butter cookies (pee butta tooties).
Shiny cookies (shiny tooties),
Tiny cookies (shiny tooties),
Some with nuts on top (‘uts on top).
These go in a cookie press (da tootie pess).
These we’ll cut and roll I guess (da tootie pess).
With chilled ones ( till ones),
And filled ones (‘n ta tians),
We don’t know where to start (do know whea ta tak).
Some are meant for slicing (be da icing).
Some we’ll frost with icing (be da icing).
Crunchy cookies (ta-shee tooties),
Munchy cookies (ta-shee tooties),
Any kind you say (tind I say).
Wash you hands and let’s begin (wash ya hand, le begin).
Bring out every cookie tin (tootie tin).
We’ll make them (and bache them),
And bake them (and ‘pieche’ them – a little confused since he already said the previous phrase),
And some we’ll give away (a da ba de, di da way)!
Every time I sing this song in my head and hear this awesome tape recorded rendition, it brings a smile to my face. These cookies will bring a smile to your face, too. Especially if you like chocolate. Because they are jam-packed full of chocolate! And they have some fun flavors going on with a little cinnamon, almond, and cayenne pepper in there (a favorite combo of mine). If you want to keep it more simple, you can easily leave out these extra flavors. But make sure you keep the vanilla in, as vanilla really does enhance the chocolate flavor.
These are great with any hot drink. I prefer hot chocolate. Because you just can’t have enough chocolate, I say. My little kids also love nibbling on biscotti and it keeps them busy for a while since they can’t just devour the whole thing within seconds. It’s a great little cookie.
Chocolate and Cinnamon Cocoa Nib Biscotti
- 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of ground nutmeg
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 3/4 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup roasted cocoa nibs
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and spices. Set aside.
In another medium bowl, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy.
Add eggs and extracts and blend until just incorporated.
Add flour mixture to wet ingredients and stir until just incorporated. This should form a soft dough.
Stir in chocolate chips and cocoa nibs until distributed.
Form the dough into a log. (Overmixing can cause the dough to be a little sticky. If this is the case, put a little flour on your hands to help out. It works wonders!
Place log on a parchment lined baking sheet (or you can use a silicone mat such as a Silpat).
With the palms of your hands, flatten the log to approximately 1 inch height.
Bake at 325 degrees F for 35-40 minutes, or until firm to the touch.
Remove from the oven and reduce heat to 250 degrees F.
Allow to cool completely before slicing.
When completely cooled, cut slices using a serrated blade on a slight angle about 1/2 inch thick.
Return slices to sheet pan, standing upright.
Bake for an additional 45 minutes at 250 degrees F, or until biscotti is well-dried.
Cookies can be stored for about a week in an air-tight container.
Dress it Up:
Melt white or chocolate chip morsels as directed per package. Dip one end of each cookie into the chocolate, place on parchment, and let set (refrigerate them to set faster).
Dress it Down:
Eliminate the cinnamon, nutmeg, and cayenne pepper. Eliminate almond extract and increase vanilla to 2 teaspoons.
Change it Up:
If you don't have cocoa nibs, simply eliminate them, or substitute another chopped nut in its place if you'd like (such as chopped pecans or almonds).
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