Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Nutella stuffed brown butter sea salt chocolate chip cookies

Happy Christmas Eve!

Every year, the girls on my cooking message board do a cookie swap during the holidays. In previous years, we did a "secret Santa" exchange where we would receive a package from someone and not know who it came from. After all the packages had been mailed, we would reveal identities. Since this was such a fun event, we decided to do it again this year.

After the random draw, I was paired up with Nicole from Cookies on Friday. This was going to be challenging since Nicole is the cookie queen. I mean, her blog title has cookies in the title, and it took me a long time to scroll through all her cookie recipes to make sure I wasn't going to send her something that she had not made before.

I settled on these Nutella stuffed brown butter sea salt chocolate chip cookies. Nicole already had a few Nutella cookies, some chocolate chip cookies, and others with sea salt, but nothing with all them mixed together.

Much to my dismay, these cookies were not easy to put together. I followed the original instructions to a T, and they failed miserably. The cookie dough was way too hard to roll into balls, and the baking time was way off (I baked the first batch closer to 20 minutes, and the cookies never flattened). Round #1 = epic fail.

Round 2 was better, but it still didn't turn out the way I wanted them to. I did not chill my dough or my Nutella, and I think it worked out better. I flatted the cookie dough balls more, but they still remained puffy. The final cookie didn't have a lot of nooks and crannies to add much sea salt to the tops, but they still tasted good. The next time I bake something similar, I am sticking to my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, stuffing it with Nutella and calling it a day.

Nicole, I hope you enjoyed these cookies, despite my baking errors!

Nutella stuffed brown butter sea salt chocolate chip cookies
  • 2 and 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1 and 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon plain greek yogurt
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 jar of Nutella, chilled in refrigerator
  • Coarse sea salt for sprinkling
Directions
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a small saucepan (preferably a stainless one), melt the butter over medium heat until it starts to brown. Do not step away from the stove because the butter will burn very quickly after it browns. The butter should have a nutty aroma once it is browned. Turn off the stove and allow it to cool slightly.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer, mix the browned butter with the brown and granulated sugars on medium speed until combined. Then add the egg, egg yolk, vanilla and Greek yogurt until well mixed.

Turn the mixer down to low and slowly add the dry ingredients. Fold in the 3 different types of chocolate chips (either by hand or with the mixer on low).

Chill the dough for 2 hours in the refrigerator or in the freezer for 30 minutes until the dough hardens.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

Using a cookie scoop or two teaspoons, scoop out about 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons of dough and roll into a ball. Using the palm of your hand, flatten the dough ball into a thin disc. Scoop out about 1 teaspoon of the chilled Nutella into the middle of the dough and fold the dough around the Nutella. Then roll the dough back into a ball. You'll want to make sure that no Nutella is exposed or it will ooze while baking. Very gently press down on the dough ball and flatten slightly.

Place flattened dough balls 2 inches apart on a parchment-topped cookie sheet (I used my imitation Silpat).

Bake the cookies for 9-11 minutes or until the edges of the cookies begin to turn golden brown. The middles will appear underdone, but that is OK. The cookies will continue to firm up after they are removed from the oven.

Allow the cookies to rest for at least 2 minutes before sprinkling them with some sea salt and then transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Cookies should be stored in an airtight container at room temperature and will keep for several days. They can also be frozen and thawed.

Yield: About 24-30 cookies

Source: Barely adapted from Ambitious Kitchen

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