Sunday, January 14, 2007

Chocolate Chip Cookies with Hazelnuts

I was originally going to make some pretzels with the bread maker but I discovered we were out of yeast, so that will have to wait. Instead, I decided to make some of Giada de Laurentiis's chocolate chip cookies. This recipe is from her new cookbook, Giada's Family Dinners, which I received from my secret santa at work. It is so super-easy to put together, bakes quickly, and makes some of the best-textured chocolate chip cookies ever. We both really liked the addition of the hazelnuts and Heath bars. I also substituted milk chocolate chips instead of semi-sweet, which was an awesome decision on my part. I would definitely make these again.

Chocolate Chip Cookies with Hazelnuts
Giada's Family Dinners, pg 220

If I do say so myself, this is the ultimate chocolate chip cookie. I made five hundred of them for my wedding. I always keep a batch in the freezer for a quick pick-me-up.

1/2 cup old-fashioned (not instant) oats
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 ounces English toffee candy (recommended: Heath or Skor bar), finely chopped
1 cup hazelnuts, toasted, husked, and chopped
1 (12-ounce) bag semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line 2 heavy large baking sheets with parchment paper.

Finely chop the oats in a food processor. Transfer the oats to a medium bowl. Mix in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars in a large bowl until fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and stir just until blended. Stir in the toffee, hazelnuts, and chocolate chips.

Drop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets by rounded tablespoonsful, spacing 1-inch apart (do not flatten dough). Bake until the cookies are golden (cookies will flatten slightly), about 15 minutes. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer them to a cooling rack and cool completely. (The cookies can be prepared 1 day ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.)

Yield: 4 dozen

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