Monday, December 01, 2008

VGP #1 Hazelnut Chewies

Welcome to Day 1 of your Virtual Goody Plate! (And Happy 16th Birthday to my oldest nephew Thompson!)

Every issue, Cook's Country magazine (which I LOVE) has a recipe contest and publishes the $1,000 first place winner and four runners up. The most recent (Dec/Jan) issue's contest was cookies, and while I was not at all tempted by the winner - "Fudgy Peanut Butter Mousse Cups" - all four runners up looked awesome.

The first one I tried was "Hazelnut Chewies" from Jennifer in Tucson, Arizona. The original recipe called for 1 tsp espresso powder so I substituted cocoa powder. Also, Jennifer must have a very sweet sweet tooth, because I found the final roll in powdered sugar overkill. I mean, they already have a whole freaking jar of Nutella in there. So while the white is pretty, I think it's optional, and they taste just as good or better without. This is a cookie for someone in the mood to enjoy the process - there's a little more toasting, chopping, chilling and rolling than more straightforward drop cookie recipes. But it's great for a rainy day and they are totally delish. Plus they ode to my firstborn.

3 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups Nutella spread (a 13 oz. jar)
4 T unsalted butter, softened
1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp instant espresso powder (or cocoa)
2 large eggs
1/3 cup milk 1 1/2 cups hazelnuts, toasted and chopped fine
1 cup powdered sugar, optional

1. Line baking sheet(s) with parchment paper. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in bowl. With electric mixer on med-high speed, beat Nutella, butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add vanilla, espresso (cocoa), and eggs and mix until incorporated. Reduce speed to low, add flour mixture and milk, and mix until just combined. Fold in 1/2 cup hazelnuts and refrigerate dough until firm, about 1 hour.

2. Preheat oven to 375. Place remaining hazelnuts in bowl. Add powdered sugar to another bowl. One at a time, roll dough into 1-inch balls, roll in hazelnuts, then roll in powdered sugar. Place balls 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Bake until set, about 8 to 10 minutes. Cool 5 minutes on sheets, then transfer to wire rack and cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough.
Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies

(With)


(Without)

7 comments:

Springer Family said...

You're making me drool on my keyboard.....

MiaKatia said...

I can already tell I am going to LOVE VGP this month. I actually think these look really pretty without the powdered sugar.

Jenifuz said...

They look really yummy! Too bad Ethan's allergic to hazelnuts. :(

Disco Mom said...

Springers: that's the point of course.

Mia: roll up your sleeves, we're just getting started. it's gonna be a good month over here.

Fuz: ooh, major bummer. You could put a different nut on the outside but I don't really know what you'd sub for the Nutella. Not to worry, there's only one other hazelnut recipe this month. I usually use pecans in most nut-calling recipes.

Nells-Bells said...

wow. these look soooooo good. will have to try them and start my diet next week. :)

Kate Cummings said...

Testament: I have eaten these and they are AMAZING!!

Thanks for the recipe!

Disco Mom said...

Nells: You mean next MONTH!

Katy: Awesome, thanks for the plug. So glad you liked them. I need to get back over there and bring you a sampling of the newest creations.

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