Nutella Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies

These are what I tend to think of as ‘bakery style’ cookies: super sized, chewy and packing a pretty hefty sugar punch.  In other words – awesome!

Nutella Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies

It occurs to me as I write that these would be even better with the addition of some roughly chopped blanched hazelnuts thrown into the dough; Nutella and hazelnuts are, after all, a very happy partnership.

Best served with a tall glass of milk, and in single portions ….

Nutella Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes around 15 enormous ‘bakery size’ cookies

  • 120g strong white flour
  • 120g plain flour
  • 3/4  teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder
  • 142g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 142g light soft brown sugar
  • 113g granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6-8 tablespoons of Nutella
  • 200g milk chocolate chips
  • Sea salt, for sprinkling

Sift together the plain flour, strong white flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, espresso powder and salt into a large bowl and set aside.

Cream together the butter and sugars on medium speed until very light, about 5 minutes. Add the egg and mix well then add the vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low, gradually add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the chocolate chips then drop the spoonfuls of Nutella over the dough and ‘cut’ in in with a large metal spoon (you want a sort of marbling effect so don’t over-mix it).

Cover the dough and refrigerate for at least 24 hours and up to 72 hours (the longer you leave it to chill, the better the flavour will be).

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 180C/170FAN. Line a baking tray with baking paper.

Scoop balls of dough with a medium ice cream scoop (as a rough guide, about the size of tennis balls) and place on the baking sheets, spaced out well. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake until just golden brown in places but still soft (this took 11 minutes in my fan oven). Always err on the side of caution as the cookies will continue to bake when removed from the oven. Allow to cool on the tray for a few minutes to firm up, then transfer the cookies onto a wire cooling rack and leave to cool (if you can!).

Repeat with remaining dough (or keep some of the dough refrigerated for up to 3 days, and bake cookies at a later time).

Store leftover cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. If freezing, let cool completely then pack into freezer bags.

Mint Chocolate Truffles

The thing I like about making confectionery, in particular chocolate truffles, is that folks can indulge by enjoying something small enough not to make them feel they are derailing their diet but also get a mouthful of pure decadence to sweeten their day.  These truffles provide a real minty punch against a lush white chocolate ganache, complemented by the dark chocolate exterior.

Mint Chocolate Truffles

The original recipe is from Dan Lepard and I haven’t changed it except that he makes his very large whereas I opted to make standard small truffles, because I think the richness of these works better in small amounts.  I also omitted the alcohol as I don’t think it’s necessary.

These would make a beautiful gift at any time of year.  I gifted them to my colleagues and they went down very well!

Mint Chocolate Truffles

Makes 28

  • 1 large handful washed mint leaves
  • 100ml double cream
  • 400g white chocolate
  • 50g unsalted butter, softened and diced small
  • 3 tsp peppermint extract
  • 300g dark chocolate

With a sharp knife, very finely chop the mint leaves so they’re almost minced, then add to a saucepan with the cream and bring to a boil. Break the chocolate into small pieces, then over a very low heat leave them to melt into the cream. Spoon into a bowl, stir in the butter, then leave this to melt through the chocolate. (Don’t worry if it seems very oily and separates a little at this stage.)

Once the mixture is only barely warm, add the peppermint extract, beat gently until it looks slightly creamy, leave to cool, then chill until very firm, taking it out the fridge to give it a good smush together with a fork occasionally.  Scoop the mixture into small balls, place on a tray lined with baking paper and freeze until hard.

Once frozen, melt the dark chocolate (over a bain-marie or in the microwave), then, using two forks, dip the truffles once or twice into the chocolate, drain off any excess and leave to set on a tray lined with nonstick paper.

Will keep for up to 2 weeks in an airtight tin (no need to refrigerate).

Recipe by Dan Lepard.

Peanut Butter Cookies (GF)

Listen up, fellow peanut butter lovers – you need these cookies in your repertoire.  Why?  Because they take literally five minutes and one bowl to mix together, you can add any wee bits you’ve got lying around to the dough, there is no chilling or fancy equipment needed and they bake up in ten minutes flat.  And they taste AMAZING.  Any cravings for both peanut butter and cookies will be instantly alleviated with one of these beauties.

Peanut Butter Cookies GF

Because there is no flour and you bake them for a short time, they are beautifully dense and fudgy inside with a lovely sturdy and slightly chewy surface.

I added what was left of a bag of Reese’s PIeces and a bar of dark chocolate (roughly chopped) to the dough but you could add any sort of chocolatey nugget.  Just have a wee root around in the cupboard and see what you have that will work to offset the salty creaminess of the peanut butter or, heck, whatever you just feel like adding.

Peanut Butter Cookies (GF)

Makes 10 generously sized cookies

  • 200g peanut butter (either smooth or a mix of smooth and crunchy – I used a mix)
  • 135g light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Approx 150g or so of roughly chopped chocolate or any wee bits you fancy adding

Preheat oven to 180C/170FAN.

In a good sized mixing bowl, beat together the peanut butter, brown sugar, egg, and vanilla until uniform. Stir in the baking powder and salt. Fold in whatever additions you’re using.

Form dough into rough balls around the size of a small golf ball and place onto a lined baking sheet, allowing plenty space between the cookies.  Bake for 8-10 minutes but be careful not to over-bake (mine took exactly 9 minutes – err on the side of caution). Cool on the baking sheet for several minutes before moving to a cooling rack to cool completely (the cookies will be fragile and need to firm up a bit before they can be moved).

Leave to cool before storing in a suitable tin for up to 1 week.  Can also be frozen.

Recipe adapted from Pastry Affair.