This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Bob\u2019s Red Mill. One of my absolute favorite parts about the holiday season is having more excuses to bake. I love to bake for a couple reasons. First, I find it very therapeutic and relaxing. Second, I love making things to share with the people I love. It makes me so happy when people like the items I made and it gives them a little boost to their day too. This holiday season, I\u2019m trying all new recipes I\u2019ve never tried before, like these chocolate dipped hazelnut shortbread cookies. I found this recipe in The Gourmet Cookie Book, which I\u2019ve had for about a decade. Although I love looking at all the gorgeous cookie pictures, I haven\u2019t actually made many of them before. Shortbread cookies remind me so much of the holiday, so I thought it was about time I try out one of these recipes. The original recipe called for walnuts, but I opted to do a hazelnut version. The funniest thing happened though \u2013 I didn\u2019t realize my store wouldn\u2019t have hazelnuts, so I had to get the kind in the shell. I also had no idea how much effort it requires to shell hazelnuts. I didn\u2019t even have a nutcracker. Luckily, my metal meat mallet worked well to crack them open, and I found this nifty trick to peel the hazelnuts in boiling water. Once I had the hazelnuts peeled, I roasted them in the oven for about 15 minutes to dry them off and also bring out more of their natural flavors. Once the nuts were out of the oven, I put them in a food processor to make them finely ground. If you can\u2019t find hazelnuts at your store, you can definitely use another kind of nut. The original recipe called for walnuts, but you could also swap in almonds, or maybe even mixed nuts. Once the nuts were ready, the rest of the recipe was pretty straight-forward. I used Bob\u2019s Red Mill Organic All Purpose Baking Flour, which is my favorite because their products are the highest quality so they really make baked good shine. I also chose to incorporate some extra hazelnut flavor by adding some chocolate hazelnut spread into the semi-sweet chocolate when it came time to dipping the cookies. I mentioned this in the notes below, but if you want to be sure your chocolate is extra firm, you might want to eliminate the chocolate hazelnut spread. At room temperature, the chocolate didn\u2019t harden completely, but definitely did harden in the refrigerator. However, if you prefer cookies at room temperature, and you don\u2019t want semi-soft chocolate (it was almost like ganache at room temperature), then you might just want to stick with the semi-sweet chips on their own. These chocolate dipped hazelnut shortbread cookies are so delicious. Besides the effort of preparing the hazelnuts, the cookies themselves were actually super easy to make. I really can\u2019t wait to share this recipe with my coworkers. I\u2019m planning to bring them into the office this week, and I\u2019m sure they are going to be a big hit. If you\u2019re looking for some other great cookie recipes, a few of my favorites are: gingerbread crinkle cookies, almond thumbprint cookies (gluten free) and these chocolate snowcap cookies. Happy baking! Chocolate Dipped Hazelnut Shortbread Cookies For Cookies: 2 Cups Bob\u2019s Red Mill Organic All Purpose Baking Flour \u00bd Teaspoon Baking Powder \u00bc Teaspoon Salt 2 Sticks (1 Cup) Unsalted Butter, Softened \u00be Cup Packed Light Brown Sugar 1 Teaspoon Vanilla 1 Cup Finely Chopped Hazelnuts For the Decoration: 1 Cup Semisweet Chocolate Chips \u00bc Cup Chocolate Hazelnut Spread \u00bd Cup Finely Chopped Hazelnuts Cookie Directions: Preheat the oven to 375. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Beat together the butter, brown sugar, and vanilla until pale and fluffy (you can use a stand or hand mixer). Slowly mix in the flour at a low speed, until incorporated. Stir in the hazelnuts. Form 2 teaspoon dough into oval or egg-shaped discs. Arrange them on inch apart on a parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake in batches in middle of the oven until undersides are light brown, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack. Decorating Directions: Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted (mine took about a minute and a half). Stir in the chocolate hazelnut spread, until incorporated. Dip half of each cookie in the melted chocolate and then sprinkle the chopped hazelnuts to cover the end. Place each coated cookie on a wax paper-lined baking sheet until set. Decorating Tip: If you want the chocolate to be very firm, you will want to either 1) skip using the chocolate hazelnut spread, and just dip them in chocolate or 2) keep them in the refrigerator, so they are nice and firm. The chocolate hazelnut spread keeps the chocolate from getting very hard, but if you put them in the fridge, they will be nice and hard. \u00a0This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Bob\u2019s Red Mill.