SMiLes by Meg

Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies

A little late to post this one, but not because I hadn’t baked yet – I was just too busy celebrating my Birthday Eve! After a lovely evening with friends, and a delicious tres leches cake whose only price was wearing a pink sombrero, you won’t blame me for taking a little extra time to write this one.

Fortunately, bar studying is largely a day job, which leaves nights for baking adventures and other fun (when I can get up the energy to do anything other than sit on the couch and watch hours of Friends). These cookies were the product of an impromptu baking adventure Friday night with Alisa, and are already mostly gone two days later.

I was looking for a recipe that would pack easily, since Erik is on vacation in Maine for the week and I wanted to make something I could send with him. I also wanted something vaguely Italian, largely because the other side effect of bar studying is spending probably too much time daydreaming about less stressful times in Italy.

In the region of Italy we visited, Nutella was invented and the chocolate-hazelnut combination was pretty popular. These cookies aim to capture that, while also just being a good solid drop cookie.

First, in a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed for three minutes until light and fluffy. Pictured: Alisa being a very helpful sous chef. With the mixer still running, first add the granulated sugar, then add the brown sugar, and beat until light and creamy. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and Frangelico. Add about half to the batter, beat to incorporate, and add the other half. Scrape down as necessary. Beat in the dry ingredients (which I don’t have a picture of because baking with Alisa also involves quite a bit of wine). Then, using a wooden spoon, stir in the chocolate chips and toasted hazelnuts. Drop the dough by the rounded tablespoon onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350°F for 10 to 15 minutes, until tops of cookies look dry and edges are browned. Allow to sit on baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Don’t mind my makeshift wire rack in which I use an oven rack – sometimes you have to be creative in your kitchen tools. Store in an airtight container.

Enjoy!

Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/4 cups (10 ounces) flour
  • 1/4 cup (3/4 ounce) cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup (5 ounces) sugar
  • 3/4 cup (5 ounces) light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons hazelnut liqueur (Frangelico)
  • 1 1/2 cups (9 ounces) chocolate chips
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) roasted hazelnuts, chopped

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter on medium speed for 3 minutes until light and fluffy.
  3. With mixer running, beat in sugar, then brown sugar, scraping down sides as necessary.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, vanilla extract, and Frangelico. Add to batter in two additions, beating to incorporate after each addition.
  5. Beat in dry ingredients until streaky.
  6. Using a wooden spoon, stir in chocolate chips and chopped hazelnuts to distribute.
  7. Drop dough by rounded tablespoon onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes until tops are dry and edges are browned. Allow to cool 5 minutes on baking sheet before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.

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