Yes, you read that right! Chocolate pepper cookies! My Italian grandma used to make these and I found her recipe for them not that long ago and I was SO excited to find it after all these years! In our house we just called them “pepper cookies”. I think they were named pepper cookies because ground black pepper is the most unusual ingredient in them, but you can’t even taste the pepper. You can, however, taste the cloves and cinnamon in them though. They are an unusual sounding cookie, but oh-so-delicious!
- 4 cups flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup Crisco shortening
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 Cups milk (can add a little more if needed)
Mix the dry ingredients well (flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, pepper, cloves, cinnamon, cocoa powder). Then add your Crisco and milk. Mix until blended. If the mixture is very dry, add a little more milk.
Roll into small balls, and place on parchment paper lined cookie sheets. Bake at 350º for 20 minutes.
Once they are cooled, make your icing. I just use about 1.5 cups of powdered sugar with about 2 tablespoons of water for my icing.
Drop a spoonful of icing on the cookies and let the icing drizzle down the sides. If you’d like to add sprinkles, add them right after you put the icing on. Otherwise, the icing will harden and the sprinkles will not stick.
Once the icing hardens, enjoy!