Rich, chewy chocolate cookies stuffed with hazelnuts and topped with a sprinkle of seasalt. These chocolate cookies have a soft center and are truly easy to make. Perfect to accompany a cup of tea during the chilly fall weather.
TGIF! Time for weekend. Do you guys have any exciting plans? I don’t have anything special planned. Just some shooting, editing and blogging. Standard stuff. We did have crazy hot weather this week by the way. It’s cooling off this weekend though.. Which I actually like. Too much heat isn’t nice either. I feel like after my Tokyo trip, I’ve gotten to appreciate the cool Dutch weather a bit more. Definitely not looking forward to winter weather though haha.. #firstworldproblems 😛 Speaking about winter, can you believe winter’s almost here? Time flies. It’s crazy. Usually, I’m getting ready for the Facebook Cookie Swap around this time of the year. Meaning: brainstorming about new cookies; new cookies, new flavors, new textures.. Unfortunately, the cookie swap has been canceled this year (aww…!!!). But if you think that’s going to stop me from developing cookies this year, you’re dead wrong! As a matter of fact, the first couple of cookie batches have already succesfully left my kitchen. Today, I’m sharing my first and possibly my favorite recipe (+video!). Also, did I mention there’s seasalt involved? So good. And there are only 14 cookies in a batch so you won’t have a gazillion cookies for leftovers like most cookie recipes (which I wouldn’t mind actually, but my tummy might..). Seriously, you’ve got to try this.
To make these cookies thick, soft and chewy:
- I used a combination of brown and white sugar.
- I also added some cornstarch to the flour to tenderize the gluten thus resulting in soft cookies. I learned this trick from Sally and always apply it when I want my cookies to turn out nice and soft. If you don’t have cornstarch you can use cake flour instead of flour + cornstarch. The cookies will turn out a bit softer than the cornstarch cookies, but they will still be super delicious.
- Finally, I used both real butter and shortening. The combination of these two fats, give these cookies their unique texture. If you don’t have shortening on hand, you can substitute with butter. Keep in mind the cookies will probably be flatter. Don’t substitute butter with shortening unless it’s butter flavored shortening though. The cookies will not be good. Regular shortening has no flavor at will result into bland cookies.
Then there’s the espresso powder. Like I’ve mentioned before, espresso powder enhances the chocolate flavor. You will definitely not taste it in your cookies, but if you’re really hesitant you can also substitute it with a pinch of cinnamon or leave it out completely. It’s up to you, but I definitely recommend it.
Other than the stuff mentioned above, there’s nothing special about the ingredients. Your regular leaveners, cocoa and egg are the remaining ingredients. The chopped hazelnuts are optional. Okay, not really, but who am I to force you guys to do something you might not want? 😉 If you’re allergic to hazelnuts, I recommend some other chopped nut of your choice. Or chocolate chips. You can never go wrong with chocolate chips. Ever.
- 150 g flour
- 30 g cocoa powder
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp espresso powder (optional)
- ¼ tsp salt
- 80 g unsalted butter
- 30 g Crisco shortening
- 80 g granulated sugar
- 110 g brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 100 g chopped hazelnuts (+extra for decorating)
- seasalt (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 180C and line a baking tray with a silicone bakingmat. Set aside.
- In a bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, espresso powder and salt with a spoon. Set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, beat the butter, shortening and sugars until mixed evenly.
- Add the egg and vanilla extract. Mix until evenly combined.
- Add the flour mixture and stir with a spatula or wooden spoon until a cookie dough is formed.
- Mix in the hazelnuts.
- Cover the cookie dough with clingfilm and place in fridge for 1,5-2 hours.
- Rolls balls from the cookie dough (about 1,5-2 Tbsp) and place them evenly apart on the baking tray. The cookies will spread to about twice the size. Slightly press the cookie balls to make them stick to the baking mat. If you like, you can now press some extra hazelnuts on top and sprinkle some seasalt.
- Bake the cookies 12-15 minutes at 180C for chewy cookies. Let the cookies cool completely before removing from the baking tray. Store in an airtight container.