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Mocha holiday cookies by way of South American truffles

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Brigadeiros are a classic Brazilian truffle-like confection that traditionally blends the flavours of chocolate and caramel. We love these easy no-bake treats, so we decided to update them with the more traditional holiday flavours of gingerbread, mocha and molasses. These brigadeiros also make great gifts, as they are easily made ahead and refrigerated for several weeks.

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MOCHA GINGERBREAD BRIGADEIROS

Start to finish: 45 minutes

Makes 36 cookies

1 tablespoon butter, plus more for buttering hands and bowl

14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk

1/4 cup cocoa powder

1 tablespoon instant coffee powder

1 tablespoon molasses

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger

Crushed gingerbread cookies or chopped pistachios

Use a bit of butter to coat the inside of a medium bowl.

In a medium saucepan over medium, combine the sweetened condensed milk, cocoa powder, 1 tablespoon of butter, the instant coffee, molasses, ginger, cinnamon and cloves. Cook, stirring constantly, for 10- to 12 minutes, or until thickened. The mixture should hold a line when you drag your spoon through it. Stir in the crystallized ginger, then pour into the buttered bowl and allow to cool.

Once the mixture is cool, use buttered hands to roll the mixture into 3/4-inch balls, then roll through the crushed gingerbread or pistachios. Serve in small cupcake papers. Can be refrigerated for 3 weeks in a tightly sealed contained.

Nutrition information per cookie: 60 calories; 15 calories from fat (25 per cent of total calories); 2 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 5 mg cholesterol; 25 mg sodium; 9 g carbohydrate; 0 g fiber; 7 g sugar; 1 g protein.

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