Difficulty: Easy - for beginners
Serves: 4 1/2 dozen
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups Nutella spread
4 tablespoons unsalted butter , softened
1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
2 large eggs
1/3 cup milk
1 1/2 cups hazelnuts , toasted and chopped fine
1 cup confectioners' sugar
* Using instant espresso powder here deepens the chocolate flavor without calling attention to itself.
* Use the creaming method to mix the dough: Beat the fats and sugar together until light and fluffy before adding the liquid ingredients, and finally, the dry ingredients. Creaming ensures the best spread and rise.
* Make sure the butter is soft enough before creaming. Cold butter wonâ€™t mix nearly as well with the sugar and, consequently, the cookies will turn out flat.
1. Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and heat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in bowl. With electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat Nutella, butter, and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add vanilla, espresso, and eggs and mix until incorporated. Reduce speed to low, add flour mixture and milk, and mix until just combined. Fold in ½ cup hazelnuts and refrigerate dough until firm, about 1 hour.
2. Place remaining hazelnuts in bowl. Add confectionersâ€™ sugar to another bowl. One at a time, roll dough into 1-inch balls, roll in hazelnuts, then roll in confectionersâ€™ sugar. Place balls 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Bake until set, about 8 minutes, switching and rotating sheets halfway through baking. Cool 5 minutes on sheets, then transfer to wire rack and cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough