Italian Pepper Balls

Italian Pepper Balls

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6 people made this

About this recipe: These keep well and also freeze well. Rum or whisky works well in place of the brandy.


Serves: 75 

  • 3/4 cup (180g) shortening
  • 1 cup (225g) caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup (60g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 cups (500g) plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 cup (250ml) milk
  • 1 fluid ounce (30ml) brandy
  • 1/2 cup (70g) finely chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup (80g) butter
  • 3/4 cup (90g) icing sugar
  • 5 tablespoons (25g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 fluid ounces (60ml) brandy

Prep:30min  ›  Cook:20min  ›  Extra time:8hr chilling  ›  Ready in:8hr50min 

  1. Melt shortening and cool. Add in caster sugar, 1/2 cup cocoa, black pepper, ground cloves, allspice and ground cinnamon. Stir in flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda and mix well. Stir in milk, 1 ounce brandy, rum or whisky and chopped nuts.
  2. Wrap dough in plastic and refrigerate 4-8 hours.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  4. Break off little pieces of dough and roll into small balls, about 2cm in diameter. Bake at 175 degrees C (350 degrees F) for 20 minutes. DO NOT overbake. Remove from tray and roll in glaze.
  5. To Make Glaze: Combine 1/3 cup of butter, 3/4 cup icing sugar, 5 tablespoons cocoa, and 2 ounces of brandy, rum or whisky. Mix until smooth. Roll cooled cookies in glaze and place on waxed paper to dry.

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