Chocolate Chip Cookies with Hazelnuts

I LOVE this cookie!!  I make a lot of cookies and this one is by far one of the best. This recipe is taken from “Giada’s Family Dinners” by Giada De Laurentiis. I used 3 SKOR bars, they weighed just slightly over 4 ounces.  The hazelnuts were simple to toast and husk.  (Below the cookie recipe is instructions on how to toast and husk hazelnuts.)
Makes 4 dozen

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 light brown sugar, packed
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 ounces English toffee candy (such as Heath or Skor bar), finely chopped
1 cup hazelnuts, toasted, husked, and chopped (see below)
1 (12-ounce) bag semisweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat the oven to 325F.  Line 2 large, heavy baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. 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.
3. 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 pieces, hazelnuts, and chocolate chips.
4. Drop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets by rounded tablespoonsful, spacing them 1 inch apart (do not flatten the dough).  Bake until the cookies are golden (they will flatten slightly), about 15 minutes.  Cool the cookies on the baking sheet 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.)

How to toast nuts and skin hazelnuts

1.  Preheat the oven to 400F.  Place shelled nuts, such as walnuts, almonds, pine nuts, and hazelnuts, on a heavy baking sheet or in a pie tin.  Toast the nuts in the oven until they are fragrant and golden brown on the outside and pale golden throughout the inside, stirring occasionally and watching closely to ensure they brown evenly and don’t blacken, about 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the size of the nut.  Alternatively, preheat a small, heavy skillet over medium- low heat.  Place the nuts in the hot skillet and stir them until they become fragrant and golden brown on the outside and pale golden throughout the inside, about 5 minutes.

2.  To remove the dark brown skins on the hazelnuts, rub a small handful of cooled toasted hazelnuts at a time briskly between your palms, allowing the skins to fall from your hands and onto a work surface.  Don’t worry if a few specks of skin remain on the hazelnuts.


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