Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies

I feel pretty confident to state that most people consider peanuts or peanut butter as the “go-to” nut item to implement into a dessert (especially desserts containing chocolate). Peanut butter cookies, peanut butter pie, and peanut butter and fudge brownies are just a few examples of classic dessert items that have morphed into something different with the addition of nuts. Unfortunately for me, my doctors found that I have a slight allergic skin reaction to peanuts. So, now I have to find different ways to satisfy my cravings for peanut butter or peanut-flavored desserts.

Luckily for me, I was introduced to Nutella two summers ago when I studied abroad in Florence, Italy. Instead of peanuts/peanut butter, Italians literally go “nuts” for Nutella. Now, I realize that was an awful pun, but it is completely true. And, just like them, I developed a deep love for Nutella as well.

So, this past weekend, I became elated when a friend and I saw a recipe for Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies in Ina Garten’s cookbook titled  How Easy is That? So, to get us into the Holiday spirit, we put on some Christmas music and substituted normal cookie cutters for Christmas themed cookie cutters while baking.

Step 1: Toast Hazelnuts

Step 2: Cream Butter and Sugar, Add
Flour Mixture and Toasted Hazelnuts

Step 3: Chill Dough, Roll Dough, Cut Dough

Step 4: Bake Dough

Step 4: Spread Nutella, Put Together,
Sprinkle Powdered Sugar

I’m glad that my love for Nutella has returned this Holiday season. But, not only did these serve as perfect Christmas Cookies, but they can be made year-round as a perfect chocolate-y treat!



Festive Biscotti for December

Biscuit? Bread? Cookie? Depending on who you talk to or what region of the world you are in, Biscotti takes on a different classification. In my opinion, I view Biscotti as a dessert and therefore classify it as a cookie.

This recipe for Almond and Lemon Biscotti Dipped in White Chocolate seemed like a perfect choice and one that I could easily modify for some Christmas flair (red, green and white colored sprinkles!).

Step 1: Mix Eggs, Sugar, and Lemon Zest

Step 2: Stir Almonds into Mixture

Step 3: Bake Dough Once, Slice, Bake Again

Step 4: Melt White Chocolate, Dip
Biscotti, Add Sprinkles

So, no matter what you classify Biscotti as, when done right it does not disappoint!

Next time, I will opt to experiment with pistachios and cranberry or perhaps include some chocolate (to satisfy my chocolate cravings, of course).