Cocoa and hazelnut cookies are a classic Italian winter treats.
The dried fruit is a classic of Italian Christmas desserts and breakfasts. From the North to the South of the Country there are many specialties made with walnuts, almonds, pistachios, chestnuts, pine nuts, dried figs, raisins: “Zelten” from Trentino- Alto Adige; “Crescenzin” from Piedmont; “Panforte” from Siena; “Pampepato” from Ferrara; “Parrozzo” from Pescara; “Frustingo” (or “Bostengo”) from Marche; “Mostaccioli” from Naples; “Buccellato” from Sicily.
At Christmas, the homemade cookies (biscuits) are something special and even the most simple recipe, like this, becomes delicious with Christmas stencils in various shapes and styles.
100 g (3½ oz) hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
150 g (5 oz) raw brown sugar (or coconut sugar)
350 g (12 oz) whole wheat flour
1 tsp organic baking powder
pinch of sea salt
1 organic free range large egg
3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
200 g (7 oz) high quality butter, cut into cubes
- In a food processor, chop the hazelnuts. Add the rest of the ingredients, in the order indicated and mix until dough is soft but firm.
- Form a ball and let rest in refrigerator for thirty minutes. Once removed from the refrigerator, knead the batter for a few minutes and, after lying, derive forms of Christmas tree (or other shape) with the appropriate mold.
- Place the cookies on a baking sheet, covered with parchment paper and bake at 180° C (350°F/gas 4) for 15-20 minutes.