Adapted by my pastry-chef friend Cindy from a recipe in Nick Malgieri's Great Italian Desserts, these cookies are chewy, spicy, and utterly addictive. Makes 15 cookies.
1/2 cup natural (not Dutched) cocoa powder
2/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup finely ground almonds
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup dry red wine (or water)
1 cup confectioners sugar
1/4 cup water
Preheat the oven to 325°F.
the bowl of a Kitchenaid-type stand mixer fitted with the paddle
beater, sift the cocoa powder. Add flour, sugar, almonds, cinnamon,
cloves and baking soda. Mix lightly to combine. Add honey, molasses and
wine. Mix until a smooth, sticky dough forms. Allow to stand for 1
minute to absorb the liquid, then refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Turn the dough onto a generously floured surface, and pat into a 6x10-inch rectangle about 1/4-inch thick. Flour the dough lightly, and roll over it once or twice with a rolling pin to even it out. Using a ruler and a pizza cutter or sharp knife, cut the dough into 2-inch squares. With a dry pastry brush, wipe off any excess flour. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone liner, and transfer squares to the pan. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove pan from the oven and let sit for 1 minute. Then, lift the parchment (with the cookies on it) and place it on a cooling rack.
the cookies are still warm, combine confectioners sugar and 1/4 cup
water in a small bowl, and stir until smooth to make a glaze. Paint the
surface of each cookie; the glaze will soak in. In a minute or two,
paint on a second coat of glaze. Allow the cookies to cool completely;
they will remain chewy on the inside.
If you have any left over, and you won't, store in an airtight container.