Chocolate Hazelnut Thumbprints
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup cocoa powder
- ½ cup salted butter, softened
- ⅔ cup sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 tsp milk
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup finely chopped hazelnuts
- 1 egg white, lightly beaten
- 14 vanilla caramels, unwrapped
- 3 Tbsp heavy whipping cream
- ½ cup milk chocolate pieces
- 1 tsp shortening
1. Preheat oven to 350. Prep two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
2. In a small bowl combine flour and cocoa powder and set aside. In another bowl, beat butter until smooth. Add the sugar and beat until well combined, scraping bowl occasionally.
3. Beat in egg yolk, milk, and vanilla until combined. Add the flour, and mix well. If the batter gets too tough to mix, use a wooden spoon to finish mixing in the flour. (This will only be an issue if you are using a hand mixer. A stand mixture should power through this no problem.) Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour.
4. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place 1 cup of chopped hazelnuts in a bowl. Dip balls in egg white and roll in hazelnuts. Place 1 inch apart on prepared cookie sheets. Using your thumb, make an indentation in the center of each cookie. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until edges are firm.
5. While the cookies are baking, in a small saucepan cook caramels and cream over low heat until caramels are melted and the mixture is smooth, stirring frequently.
6. Immediately after removing cookies from the oven, use the rounded side of a 1-teaspoon measuring spoon to press down the center of each cookie. Transfer to wire racks and cool. Spoon about 1 teaspoon filling into the center of each cookie.
7. Using a double boiler, or a glass pyrex-type bowl over a pot of simmering water, heat chocolate until melted, stirring frequently. Stir in shortening until fully combined. Drizzle over cookies in a zig zag pattern. Let cool to harden before storing.
8. Store cookies in an air-tight container for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 weeks.