Mario Batali’s Mostaccioli or “Lumps of Coal” Spiced Cocoa Cookies

A Christmas time treat in Italia since the 1st century AD, mostaccioli are heavily spiced cookies that are shaped and decorated in a variety of ways. With the help of Mario Batali's recipe and expertise, my mostaccioli resemble rustic lumps of coal. All the more appropriate for the holidays! I omit the nuts and cloves, going heavier on the cinnamon and adding a dash of ground ginger. Be sure to not pack the flour in during measuring, considering 4 cups is a generous amount of APF. Also, this is a great recipe for practicing mise en place: prep and measure everything out before even grabbing that mixing bowl. Makes 3 dozen.
4CUPSall purpose flour
1 ¼CUPSgranulated sugar
¾CUPheavy cream, plus 3 additional TBSPNS for glaze, set aside
½CUPolive oil
2TBSPNSbaking powder
1 ½TSPNground cinnamon
¼TSPNnutmeg, freshly grated
¼TSPNground ginger
1 ½TBSPNsalt
8TBSPNScocoa powder
2TBSPNSvanilla extract
1 ¾CUPSdark chocolate chips
1CUPsemi-sweet chocolate, roughly chopped, set aside for glaze

  1. Set the oven to 300 degrees, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift the flour into the bowl and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients except for the dark chocolate chips, stirring vigorously: eggs, sugar, heavy cream, olive oil, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, salt, cocoa powder, and vanilla extract.
  4. Slowly add the flour until a dough begins to form, then fold in the dark chocolate chips.
  5. Roll the dough into small rounds, about 1-1 1/2 inches wide and set on the parchment-lined baking sheets. Using a fork, press gently into each cookie dough round to set on the baking sheet; these do not expand very much on the sheet.
  6. Bake in the oven for about 9 minutes. Set on a cooling rack to cool, and meanwhile, prepare the chocolate glaze.
  7. In a double boiler, begin to melt the semi-sweet chocolate chips, whisking until smooth. Add the 3 TBSPNS of heavy cream, whisking to combine, and add a pinch of salt. 
  8. Once the mostaccioli have cooled, spoon some of the glaze over each cookie and sprinkle with Christmas sprinkles. Serve, or store in a plastic container.


Adapted from Mario Batali.

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