CHOCOLATE NUTELLA COOKIES

I love Chocolate! I love chocolate in almost any form it will come – a molé, a cake, melted to cover or dip fruit in, ice cream, a bar, a cup – you know what I mean. Sometimes life just needs a little more chocolate in it, and along came this cookie. Anne sent me the recipe a little before Christmas, before I had found my new apartment, before I had a kitchen to bake anything in. But I read the recipe and held onto it knowing the first chance I had I would bake these.

They are more than chocolate; they are Chocolate Nutella Thumb print cookies. I am also a big fan of the thumb print cookie, I find it loads of fun to sink my finger into the round lump of dough, bake it, and then fill the indented valley with more yumminess, in this case Nutella. I had a Dutch roommate one summer who introduced me to Nutella; she would take Nutella and thickly slather it over a piece of bread and then cover it with chocolate sprinkles. I thought that took it a bit far for first thing in the morning but from then on I was an avid fan of Nutella.

With my aforementioned devotion to chocolate it must be said these cookies are a little on the chocolate overload meter – not for the faint of chocolate heart. They are delicious but they are rich and they fill your chocolate void in a small delectable few bites.

Chocolate Nutella Thumbprint Cookies:

I think this recipe came from the newspaper, originally from Huntsberg and Willis of Whisked! In Washington.

Ingredients:

1 cup flour

½ cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

1 teaspoon kosher salt

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at a very soft room temperature

½ cup sugar, + 2 tablespoons separated for dusting (the recipe called for double this but I am a fan of cutting back on sugar where and when I can)

1 large egg yolk, at room temperature

1 tablespoon heavy cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ cup Nutella

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone liner.

Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder and salt in a small bowl.

Combine the butter and ½ cup of sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer. Beat for about 2 minutes on low speed, until fluffy, then add the egg yolk, cream and vanilla extract; beat on low speed until combined. Add the flour mixture and beat until just incorporated.

Place the remaining sugar in a shallow bowl.

Scoop heaping tablespoons of dough onto the baking sheets, I got about 24 from this recipe. Shape each mound of dough into a ball, then roll it in the remaining sugar to coat evenly. Space the balls 2 inches apart on the baking sheets, then use your thumb to make an indentation in the top of each cookie, gently flattening the cookies a bit as you work.

Bake one sheet at a time for 10 minutes or until the edges are just set; the tops of the cookies will be soft. (If the indentations have lost definition, press the centers again immediately after you remove the cookies from the oven.) Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack to cool. Pipe or spoon the Nutella into the center of each cookie while the cookies are still slightly warm.

The other way I have been spending my days lately has been catching up on a list of reading. To start my current bed side list looks like this.

THE SPIRIT CATCHES YOU AND YOU FALL DOWN, By Anne Fadiman; BIRD BY BIRD, By Anne Lamott; SUPER NATURAL EVERY DAY: Well-loved Recipes from My Natural Foods Kitchen, By Heidi Swanson; MY FATHER’S DAUGHER: Delicious, Easy Recipes Celebrating Family & Togetherness, By Gwyneth Paltrow.

Happy Choco-loting and Reading,

Ramona

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02 2012

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