Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Chocolate Hazelnut Drop Cookies

I know why cookies were invented.  They were invented to help one cope with work deadlines and similar highly stressful situations.  They were invented to bring a calm over the eater.  And they were most definitely invented to ensure that I am not the next subject of that "Snapped" television series.  These are my reasons for baking these cookies.

I've had a very difficult week and the thing that got me through it was these cookies. Let's just say that I have a bottle of nutella in my pantry and I'm not afraid to use it.  Giada's recipe is simple, straightforward and filled with butter. This is how I want to live my life.

These are not your ordinary cookies. They will not be chewy or cake-y. They will be light and crispy and that's OK. Don't be afraid to add extra chocolate chips into the batter to ensure extra chocolate chip-y goodness. You won't be disappointed. In fact, I would recommend bringing a half cup of chocolate chips to the party (aka the batter) next time. We all need to take a walk on the wild side sometimes.

Chocolate Hazelnut Drop Cookies
slightly adapted from Giada's Chocolate Hazelnut Drop Cookies
yields ~3 dozen cookies
  • 1/2 cup salted butter, at room temperature 
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup Nutella, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup + 2 teaspoons chocolate chips

1) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.

2) Using a mixer, beat together the butter and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy for 2-3 minutes.

3) Add in the vanilla.

4) Gradually add the flour until it is incorporated in the mixture.

5) Beat in the Nutella until fully incorporated.

6) Stir in the chocolate chips.

7) Use a small cookie scoop or a tablespoon to drop balls of dough onto the baking sheets.

8) Bake for 10-12 minutes.  Cool for 5 minutes before removing from the pan.  Allow to cool fully for ~30 minutes.  Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

These cookies remind me of a Mexican wedding cookie, but in chocolate form.  As good as they were, next time I would amp up the chocolate chips to 1/2 cup instead of 1/4 cup, as I mentioned this earlier.  I would also add 1 teaspoon almond extract instead of 1/2 teaspoon, since the almond flavor wasn't as pronounced as it could have been.  You could also use hazelnut extract but let's face it, I wasn't running to the store to purchase additional items.  I already told you I had a stressful week!  At any rate, these treats were being stuffed in my face in no time after they popped out of the oven.  Chocolate cookies will always save me in my time of need.  That is a fact.

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