Makes about 6 dozen balls.

If you like pareve sweets with a touch of coffee and nuts, you will love these cookies.  This recipe first appeared in my cookbook, Helen Nash's New Kosher Cuisine.


• 1/4 pound (113 g) pecans
• 8 tablespoons (120 g) unsalted margarine, at room temperature
• 1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
• 2 tablespoons imported unsweetened cocoa powder
• Scant 1 cup (120 g) unbleached all-purpose flour
• 3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar


1. Chop the pecans in a food processor until medium-fine.

2. Place the margarine in the bowl of an electric stand mixer. Using the balloon whisk attachment, cream the margarine at medium speed. Gradually add the granulated sugar and beat about 5 minutes, until the mixture is pale and bubbles appear. Add the vanilla, espresso powder, and cocoa powder and stir to combine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as you go along. Using a rubber spatula, add the flour and pecans and combine.

3. Put a level teaspoon of dough in your palm and roll it into a smooth ball, then place each one on an ungreased baking sheet. Continue making the balls until all the mixture has been used. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).

4. Bake the cookies for 12 minutes, or until they are just firm to the touch. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.

5. Place the confectioners’ sugar on a piece of wax paper and roll the warm balls in the sugar until they are coated well. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Sprinkle with any remaining confectioners’ sugar.


Mocha pecan balls freeze beautifully. Place them side by side in an air-tight plastic container, with wax paper between the layers.