Ferrero Rocher Cookie

Happy year of the dog everybody!

Chinese New Year is the time when you visit your friends and relatives, very often those you only see during this time of the year, and got “interrogated” by them =.=.  Gift plays an important role in Chinese culture, so you never go empty-handed! If you pay attention to TV commercials enough, you may notice that many of the most popular gift items among Hong Kongers are, interestingly, not Chinese produces. Kjeldsens Cookies, Almond Roca, Sugus, Ferrero Rocher… just to name a few. Ferrero Rocher is particularly popular in Hong Kong for its golden package, a color Chinese people love for it symbolizes wealth.  I’m not a superstitious person, but I do like their creamy, nutella-like centres!

And…. Surprise, surprise! They are equally nice when made into cookies!!


Ingredients (yield 12 pieces):

  • 6 Ferrero Rochers  (freeze them before baking)
  • 1 cup (packed) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup butter (1 stick), softened
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • ¼  cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Place the Ferrero Rochers in the freezer until firm, about an hour. Remove from freezer and hit with a hammer in a zip-loc bag a few times until they’re broken into chunky pieces. Put back in the freezer until ready to use.
  2. Preheat oven to 180°C. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in the full egg, then the vanilla, mixing until smooth. Add flour mixture in three parts, stirring until just combined after each addition.
  5. Stir in ½ the Ferrero Rocher pieces. Drop tablespoon-sized balls of dough onto prepared baking sheets, spaced 2 inches apart. Place the remaining Ferrero Rocher into the tops of the cookies, pressing them into the dough slightly.
  6. Bake for around 10 minutes until edges are nicely browned. Let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

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Dark Chocolate Chip and Hazelnut Biscotti

Biscotti is a traditional Italian cookie where the dough is formed into logs, baked, cooled slightly, and baked again in slices. The name biscotti is derived from ‘bis’ meaning twice in Italian and ‘cotto’ meaning baked or cooked. The Italians use the word “biscotti” to refer to any type of cookies, while in the English speaking world the term was used to describe this particular long, crisp, sophisticated looking cookie. The best biscotti is crunchy without breaking your teeth, crumbly without tasting sandy or dry. And when it is dipped into a steamy mug of coffee… aww…It just melts in your mouth!

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Ingredients (yields 1 dozen):

  • 2 medium eggs
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 250g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1/2 cup of toasted hazelnuts ( roughly chopped )
  • 1/2 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of almond extract
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of baking powder
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 deg C and line a large baking sheet with baking paper.
  2. Whisk together the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the vanilla and almond extract.
  4. Sift the flour, soda and baking powder into a bowl, then add salt, hazelnuts and chocolate chips.
  5. Fold into the egg mix to make dough.
  6. Tip onto a lightly floured surface, shape into a 25cm sausage shape with lightly floured hands, then transfer to baking sheet.
  7. Flatten to a 3cm thickness, bake for 30 mins until lightly browned on surface.
  8. Take the log out to a chopping board, reduce the oven to 160C.
  9. Cut the log into 1cm thick slices and return to the baking sheet. Bake for 10-15 mins until crisp.
  10. Cool on a wire rack. Will keep in a tin for 3 weeks.