130 grams good dark chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons rum
300 grams plain flour
¼ cup Dutch cocoa
¼-½ teaspoon chilli powder
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
120 grams butter at room temperature
¾ cup caster sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
fine zest of ½ an orange
Put the chocolate and rum in a heat proof bowl and gently melt over a pot of simmering water. Set aside to cool.
Cream the butter, sugar and vanilla together until pale and creamy. Add the egg then mix in the cooled chocolate.
Combine the dry ingredients and fold into the egg mixture. Tip the dough onto the bench and roll into 2 logs about 2 cm in diameter. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm but not solid. If it is too hard the dough will crack and break when cut.
Preheat the oven to 180oC.
Slice the dough into 1½ cm thick rounds and place on a lined baking tray.
Bake for 7 minutes then carefully turn them over and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
Transfer to a cooling rack and when cold dust with icing sugar or drizzle with chocolate ganache. Store the cookies in an airtight container for up to a week. Makes about 30 cookies
Dutch Cocoa: this richer, darker cocoa has an alkali added, which neutralises the cocoa’s acidity. The process is known as dutching – the cocoa is not from Holland. Available from specialty stores.