I’m back!  See, that wasn’t so bad, all things considered.  Last night I baked for the first time in my new kitchen.  I wanted to make something that hadn’t been featured on the blog, but that I knew would make a large quantity, so the husband and I could both take them to work as a “thank you for putting up with our craziness this past week” kind of thing.  I happen to work in fundraising, and happened to close…on the last day of our fiscal year.  So it was a madhouse at work, but my office survived without me (I wear many hats, and one of them happens to be gift entry and database management), minus a few slightly panicked calls.

So as a thank you, I made them some of my favorite cookies.  Why I haven’t shared them yet on here is beyond me.  I discovered them long before the NYT chocolate chip cookies, and these just kick your average chocolate chip cookie experience up a notch or two.  They are filled with delicious things, like oats (good for you too!), chocolate chips, toasted hazelnuts, and toffee candy.  Now you won’t see me putting walnuts in any cookie or brownie on here, but for some reason the hazelnuts really spoke to me.  Maybe because I have an addiction to Nutella that started during the summer of 2000.

Today at work is also the start of our all staff filing days, as we just moved our files from a dungeon to the floor that our office is actually on.  And so there is a major backlog of things to be filed.  So these cookies are really working two fold, “thanks for putting up with us not being at work” and “thanks for filing so much stuff all at once.”

For some reason these cookies came out completely flat and slightly crispy when I baked them.  Normally they are fairly domed and less crispy.  I’m not sure if that is my new oven, or due to the fact that I used brand new baking soda and brand new baking powder.  I am going to have to do some investigating on this one and see what happens.  Regardless, they are still delicious.  They come from one of my Giada De Laurentis books (I can never remember which one has what in it), and it was a Giada-riffic dinner last night.

Above is a sneak peek of my new kitchen…please don’t mind the pile of stuff on the end of the island…we’re still unpacking and getting settled.  It will be a little while before we figure out where everything goes.  That’s the beauty of a loft, there is limited storage, so you have to get pretty creative sometimes.

We painted it grey, as it was bright red when we bought it.  I’m more of a cool colors sort of girl, as you will see in future photos of my bathroom and feature wall in the bedroom…

I also can’t help but share a photo that I snapped this morning of my amazing find of a chandelier.  It’s new, not old, but made to look old, and it certainly makes a statement.  Which is exactly what I wanted.  I’m on the hunt for a giant farm table to go under it, as the 50’s kitchen table that is there right now doesn’t quite work…and I want a giant table for entertaining purposes.

Alright, on to the recipe!

Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 ounces English toffee candy (recommended: Heath or Skor bar), finely chopped
1 cup hazelnuts, toasted, husked, and chopped
1 (12-ounce) bag semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Line 2 heavy large baking sheets with parchment paper. Finely chop the oats in a food processor. Transfer the oats to a medium bowl. Mix in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars in a large bowl until fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and stir just until blended. Stir in the toffee, hazelnuts, and chocolate chips.

For each cookie, drop 1 rounded tablespoonful of dough onto sheet, spacing 1-inch apart (do not flatten dough). Bake until the cookies are golden (cookies will flatten slightly), about 15 minutes. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely. (The cookies can be prepared 1 day ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.)

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