Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Beginnings, a Birthday, and Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies, #LetsLunch

Mexican hot chocolate cookies. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books
Let me begin by saying "Happy 5th Birthday, A Cook and Her Books!" It's been a long time since that snowy day in January 2008 when I decided to put pixel to screen and write down the stories and recipes that have floated through my brain lo these many years. Five hundred something stories later, I still feel like I have a few more to tell.

And so I find myself with a #LetsLunch post to write on the subject of New Beginnings, so right for January. Here in North Georgia, we go back and forth between real winter and mild winter. This weekend, daytime highs are expected to be in the 70s. And so the New Year begins with new growth - I stepped out of my car this afternoon and saw the first of the crocus pips, ready to shoot through the green fuse for an early spring.

Spring was on my mind five years ago,when  in that inaugural post, I shared a recipe for lemon curd-filled coconut macaroon tarts, a recipe that I first made from a Dixie Crystals newsletter 20 years prior. This year, I'll celebrate with five-ingredient cookies inspired by a recipe my teen daughter found on Pinterest. A lot of Nutella, an egg and flour, plus sugar for rolling and a heaping helping of cinnamon, for a treat we call Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies. The chocolate and cinnamon give these super-simple cookies a bit of Mexican flair. A pinch of chili powder would do the trick, too.

Mexican hot chocolate cookies. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books
Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies

Yield: 1 dozen 2-inch

1 cup Nutella
3/4 cup flour
1 egg
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 cup sugar for dusting

1. Heat oven to 350. In a bowl, use a sturdy wooden spoon or your favorite stirring utensil to mix together Nutella, flour, the egg and cinnamon.

2. Pour sugar into a small bowl. Use a cookie scoop or a tablespoon to scoop up dough and shape into balls. Coat the balls in sugar. Place on a lined cookie sheet. Press dough balls with the flat of your hand.

3. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes. Let cool briefly on cookie sheet, then remove them to cool on a wire rack. Best when eaten warm from the oven, but still pretty darn good at room temp. Store leftovers in an airtight container.

This post is part of #LetsLunch, a monthly Twitter party on a given food subject. January's theme is New Beginnings. To join in the fun, follow #LetsLunch and jump in!

Grace’s Matcha Green Tea Yogurt at Hapa Mama
Jill’s Heavenly Angel Cake at Eating My Words
Lucy’s Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies at A Cook and Her Books
Lisa’s Da Bombe Alaska at Monday Morning Cooking  Club
Linda‘s Trinidadian Black-eyed Peas  at Spicebox Travels
Nancie’s Vietnamese-style Chicken with Lemongrass at NancieMcDermott
Rashda’s Parathas at Hot Curries and Cold Beer 
Sonja’s Beetroot and Fetta Varenyky at Foodnutzz
Pat's Vietnamese Spring Rolls at Asian Grandmother's Cookbook 
Glass of Fancy Brown Butter Greens

Text and images copyright 2013, Lucy Mercer.


Nancie McDermott said...

Lucy, these look so delicious and straightforward enough to stir up on short notice. Cannot wait to make them. I will put this in my Christmas baking file, while keeping a copy out in the everyday world for say, Valentine's Day? St. Patrick's Day? April Fool's Day? Any day sounds good. Congratulations on 5 years and 500+ posts. Inspiring and wonderful. To your next 5 years.

Lucy Mercer said...

Thanks, Nancie! The cookies are a riff on the old super-easy peanut butter cookies. We're gonna try putting in a pinch of chile powder next time for a true Mexican hot chocolate. Looking forward to your #LetsLunch post!

linda @spiceboxtravels said...

Happy Blog Birthday, Lucy! That is quite an accomplishment. These cookies look lovely. In fact, I think I'll distract the girls by letting them stir up a batch for when company comes tomorrow. I'm going to throw in some cayenne, maybe even ground chipotle-- will let you know how they turn out.

Lucy Mercer said...

Let me know how the chipotle experiment goes, Linda! This is a great kid cooking project because it uses just one bowl and it makes just a dozen or so - my girls get bored after the first tray of cookies is out of the oven.

Unknown said...

So easy and so good! I added 1 tsp cayenne, which I absolutely loved but was a bit too spicy for the kids (oh well, more for me). Maybe 1/2 tsp would be better. Great recipe, thanks!

Pat Tanumihardja said...

I'm not much of a baker but you won me over with 5-ingredient cookies and Nutella! Congrats on 5 years of blogging!

Lucy Mercer said...

Thanks, Pat! The cookies are super-easy and very rewarding. Plus, they are small-batch, so not a big time investment.

Annabelle said...

Happy fifth birthday! That's quite a blog landmark.

I have been obsessed with Mexican spices in chocolate lately; I keep adding them to cakes and cookies and it's such a fun way to make them a little more interesting. (And of course, it's hard to go wrong with Nutella. I mean, really.)

Lana@Never Enough Thyme said...

Congratulations on five years of blogging! What an accomplishment.

Lucy Mercer said...

Thanks, Lana!