Hazelnut Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

Smitten Kitchen is one of my favorite cooking blogs. They consistently post recipes I want to run home and try immediately. Today they posted this extremely alluring recipe for chocolate hazelnut cookies. I love every possible combination of chocolate and hazelnut, so these cookies are going to be a must-try for me, probably this weekend. I’ve copied the recipe after the jump, but definitely go check out Smitten Kitchen as well!

Hazelnut Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies from Smitten Kitchen

Hazelnut Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies
Adapted from Gourmet

Makes about 2 dozen (24 for the Passover version, 26 for the flour version)

1 almost-full cup (4 ounces) hazelnuts, toasted, skinned and cooled
2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup matzo cake meal or 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Chocolate (I used chocolate baking discs or “wafers”; 2 or 3 chocolate chips would also work)

Pulse hazelnuts, sugar, matzo cake meal or flour, and salt in a food processor until finely ground. (Be careful not to grind to a paste.) Transfer to a bowl and stir in butter, egg, and extract until combined well. Chill dough, covered, until firm, about 30 minutes.

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F.

Drop level tablespoons of dough 1 inch apart onto 2 ungreased baking sheets (though I lined mine with parchment paper, for an easier lazier clean-up). Roll dough into balls, then chill until slightly firm, about 10 minutes.

Press one piece of chocolate firmly into the top of each ball of cookie dough and bake, 1 sheet at a time, until tops are pale golden and undersides are golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Be careful not to overbake. Transfer cookies to a rack and cool completely.

To fill with jam instead: After balls of cookie dough have been chilled for an additional 10 minutes, make a 1/2-inch-wide (1/3-inch-deep) indentation in center of each ball using your thumb, index finger, or the rounded end of a wooden spoon. Fill each indentation with 1/4 teaspoon jam.

Almond variation: The hazelnuts can also be swapped with 3/4 cup sliced almonds.

Do ahead: Cookies keep in an airtight container at room temperature 3 days.


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