Chocolate, Hazelnut & Fromage Blanc Sandwich Cookies

Chocolate, Hazelnut & Fromage Blanc Sandwich Cookies
Inspired by Sunset Magazine, December 2009
Makes about 20 sandwich cookies. For small bite-size cookies, makes 40 sandwich cookies.

• 12 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
• 1/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into chunks
• 3 large eggs, at room temperature
• 1 cup sugar
• 3/4 cup flour
• 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
• 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
• 6 oz (3/4 cup) Hazelnut Spread (Nutella or Loacker)
• 4 oz (1/2 cup) Bellwether Farms Fromage Blanc
• 1 cup chopped hazelnuts

Put chocolate and butter in a medium metal bowl over a pot filled with simmering water or a double boiler if you have one. Cook, stirring occasionally, until melted, then remove from heat and let cool slightly. Whisk in eggs and sugar, mixing until combined. Then whisk in flour, baking powder, and salt. The dough will look like thick cake batter. Chill dough, covered, until firm, about 2 hours or in the freezer for around 30 minutes.

Let dough sit at room temperature 15 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350° and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop 1 tbsp. portions of dough, rolling each into a ball, and put onto sheets 1 in. apart. (If you are making bite size cookies, scoop around 1.5-2 teaspoons and roll into a small ball). Bake cookies until they no longer look wet on top, about 8 minutes. Let cool on baking sheets.

In seperate bowl mix Fromage Blanc and hazelnut spread together until smooth. For easy filling, use a pastry bag with a round tip or spread with a knife or spatula.
Once cool, spread the flat side of 1 cookie with about 1 tbsp. Nutella and sandwich with another cookie. To finish, roll cookie in chopped hazelnuts. The nuts should coat all around the center of the cookie. Repeat with remaining cookies.