November 28, 2010

Catch The Spirit!

Dulce de Leche and Nutella Thumbprints with Sea Salt.


I'm that girl. The one who can barely wait until after Thanksgiving dinner to crank UP the Christmas music. The one who pulls out the Christmas boxes the moment the Thanksgiving dishes are put away. The one who allows the kids to decorate the tree, then rearranges it after they've gone to bed. I can't help myself.

As the song says, it's the most wonderful time of the year! How can anyone argue with such a classic song? It's a season of hope and new life. A season of forgiveness and peace. A season of thinking beyond yourself!


In effort to share this brimming holiday joy, I make batches, and  BATCHES...and batches of cookies to share with our neighbors, friends, and family.  This year I hope to share them all with you as well! I always stick with a few tried-and-true recipes, then branch out and experiment a little!

These cookies are one of my favorites. You just can't beat the delicate buttery texture of good shortbread cookies. In fact, I'm often tempted to think EVERY cookie should start as a shortbread cookie! Add caramel or chocolate-hazelnut, top them with sea salt...and you have something utterly addictive, a swear-worthy cookie!


Thumbprints are easy to make. Your kids will have a marvelous time rolling the balls and making the thumbprints. Yet make sure an adult adds the hot caramel and chocolate! You can find canned Dulce de Leche at large supermarkets (either in the international section or baking aisle) or at a Latin market.

  
Dulce de Leche and Nutella Thumbprints

4 sticks of unsalted butter, at room temperature (1 lb.)
1 1/3 cups of sugar
1 ¼ tsp. vanilla
½ tsp. salt
4 ½ cups all-purpose flour

1 - 13 oz. can Nestle La Lechera, Dulce de Leche (caramel)
1 small jar Nutella
Course sea salt for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. With an electric mixer, cream the butter, sugar, vanilla, and salt until smooth. Scrape the bowl with a spatula. Turn the mixer on low and add the flour a little at a time, until it is just combined.


Line your cookie sheets with parchment paper. Roll the dough into 1 oz. balls—about 1 ½ tablespoons. Place them on the cookie sheets and make a deep indention in each cookie, with your thumb. Press any cracks back into place.


Bake for approximately 20 minutes. It will look like the craters have disappeared, but when the cookies cool, they’ll be back!


Scoop the Dulce de Leche into a quart-size freezer bag. Microwave it for 30-60 seconds until thin, like melted peanut butter. The bag may be hot, so wrap it in a small towel. Snip a hole in the corner of the bag and squeeze about 1 ½ tsp. of caramel into the centers of 24 cookies. Tap the cookies gently to help the caramel fill in the entire indention.


While the caramel is still a little tacky, sprinkle each cookie with course sea salt. Repeat this process with melted Nutella and the remaining 24 cookies.


Allow the Dulce de Leche and Nutella to cool for a little while before serving, so the centers can set.
*You could put them in the refrigerator to speed this up!


Makes about 4 dozen.

Dulce De Leche and Nutella Thumbprints on Foodista

71 comments:

  1. My friends and I have a cookie bake off party every year. I think these will this years submission!

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  2. As fun as thumbprints are to make, I really don't know why we don't make them more often at home! Thanks for the reminder Sommer. These look amazing!!

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  3. Sommer, Nutella in Christmas cookies combined with sea salt sounds terrific!!!
    They will be baked in my house soon. Can't wait. Thanks. Kirsten

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  4. Salt and cookies go together like Nutella and Dulce de Leche! I love thumbprint cookies. Here's my pink peppercorn thumbprints w/ chocolate ganache, http://bit.ly/ePinGI. Look, sugared cranberries!

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  5. Gorgeous holiday cookie. Bookmarked for sure!

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  6. wow love these and cool idea to add the sea salt he he trying to make my pictures better lol Rebecca

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  7. these thumbprint cookies look so dainty. i widh we were neighbors so i would receive some too haha!
    Malou

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  8. I have started as of tonight my christmas baking with homemade almond roca *nom nom*I look forward to making this on the weekend..THank you for the blog visit.

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  9. Yum! I love the idea of dulce de leche cookies. I can hardly wait for the seasonal avalanche of cookies.

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  10. o gosh...these thumbprints look so wonderful! And using both nutella and dulce de leche as fillings is just brilliant!

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  11. Hi Somerjoy,
    these are great cookies....with nutella and dulce de leche fillings...who can reists them. I want some :) I am looking forward to Xmas too !!!

    Cheers,
    Elin

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  12. Loving this, thanks for stopping by my blog. These look really simple to make, something to do with the children this weekend I think!

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  13. You really can't get any better than thumbprint cookies. I love their simplicity and the freedom to fill those thumbprints with anything that takes your fancy.

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  14. Wow !!! Little Cristina would eat those cookies (the dulce de leche ones) at elementary school, during breaks..Of course, without salt!!! Argentina was not culinary sophiscated at that time...Thanks for the memory!! Your cookies look perfect!!

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  15. Yay Christmas music! There are so many haters. I can't get enough.

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  16. Mmmmmmm....beautiful cookies (and photos!!!).

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  17. looks yummy.. hope u all had great thanksgiving..

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  18. You're THAT girl I wish I lived with so I could eat the batches of cookies.

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  19. I am a Christmas person myself and since we don't have Thanksgiving here, I have already started making plans. I love your cookies and you make them look so easy.

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  20. From one THAT girl to another...


    This rocks.


    And I made pizzelles this weekend, while cranking up the Christmas music. So have zero shame.

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  21. Ooohhhh... these sound amazing, and I esp love the topping of salt! This may make me rethink my dislike of thumbprints. ;) I started Christmas baking this weekend too, woo hoo!

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  22. Yes, yes yes! These are so perfect. You've combined all my favorite flavors with these cookies. The addition of sea salt really finishes them. Bring on the Christmas season! :)

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  23. After nutella, dulce de leche is my favorite filling of all time and you used them both! I'm drooling. I want one. Or two. Please keep sharing your cookies recipes because they are a.ma.zing! It really feels like Xmas already!

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  24. Don't worry, Sommer, I am THAT girl too. I will admit that I started sneaking out a few Christmas decorations BEFORE Thanksgiving just to get my fix. My house now looks like Christmas came in and threw up all over it. ;) Your cookies look wonderful, I LOVE sea salt! It goes so well with chocolate!

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  25. These cookies are precious and I love the idea of sprinkling them with sea salt.
    Sam

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  26. I'm one of those girls too. No sooner the thanksgiving dishes are put away I rush to home depot, buy a Christmas tree and start decorate. Yes, the most wonderful time of the year.
    Your thumbcookies loos so good, salted caramel, yummy
    Hope you're having a wonderful week

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  27. Oh my goodness...these look heavenly. I love Christmas too, but I know that these cookies would REALLY get me in the festive season. I imagine that the sea salt does wonders! Thank you so much for sharing. I hope you have a wonderful Monday!

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  28. I wish I was one of your lucky neighbors :) Salted nutella, YUM! And they are easy to make - I'll have to set the Young Baker to this when she comes home for semester break.

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  29. "swear worthy" indeed! never would've thought to put nutella, instead of jam, into thumbprint cookies. genius!

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  30. Oh my....I want it! This may spark me into another Nutella frenzy. ;) Beautiful job.

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  31. Mmmhhh, divine! Those would not last long at my place.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  32. Dulce de Leche and Nutella, my favorites I can simply gorge that for days....Loved this combination....

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  33. beautiful cookies we enjoy making this thumb print cookies love the filling you put delicious

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  34. too cute! Santa would be lucky to snag one of those!! yum!

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  35. Great thumbprint recipe, love the idea of filling with nutella, oh yummy!

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  36. Sommer, dolce de leche and nutella...it sure sounds and looks delicious...so cute the cookies :-)

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  37. amazing! chocolate + salt..... can't go wrong!

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  38. Thumbprint cookies are so cute! And yours are like a fancy, more delicious version. I can't wait to make them!

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  39. I just took my thumbprint cookies out of the oven! Looks like we're on the same baking wave length :) You got me with the fillings though.. I just went with jam! Next time I'll go your direction

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  40. Just so you feel better...I am THAT girl too! hehe...I might just have to make these ASAP!

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  41. These cookies look delightful! I'm so with you on the holiday, it took everything I had not to start decorating before Saturday. Love, love, love this time of year!

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  42. These thumbprints sound amazing, I love the sprinkling of sea salt, very nice!

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  43. WHAT! Nutella and dulce de leche topped with sea salt! All the things I love in one thumbprint? OMG! This is high on my list of things to make, though I prefer making dulce de lece from scratch!

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  44. ok ... now i know what i'm taking to our cookie exchange!

    happy holidays!

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  45. Pretty cookies, Sommer! And they sound like they would be so good too:) By the way, I love Christmas too, and I made Christmas like cookies the other day right after Thanksgiving. I love all the cookies of Christmas-yum yum...

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  46. I'm that girl too! I love it when Tgiving is over and I can finally start my Christmas baking! These thumbprints are gorgeous. Just perfect for the start of the season.

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  47. These are the BEST cookies!! I have been fortunate enough to try one from Sommer's Kitchen! My Christmas wish is that I can recreate the excellency that is this cookie! It changed my life!

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  48. OMG! I'm actually drooling! These looks amazing and have been bookmarked!!!

    Love your blog!!

    Mary xo
    Delightful Bitefuls

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  49. I only recently discovered sea salt on dulce de leche and caramel. I think the discovery of sea salt on Nutella will be the death of me. The delicious, delicious death of me :)

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  50. I'm "that" girl, too! And I'm definitely bookmarking this. Nutella thumbprints - I could eat them by the dozen.

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  51. yummm.... I totally rearrange the ornaments as well...How fun! Delicious! Megan

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  52. I've never had these before - they look fantastic! And there's no shame in whipping out the holiday decor and tunes as early as Thanksgiving!

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  53. How fun, Sommer! I am looking forward to the day when my children can help me bake - and let me bake more! These sound amazing - the salted top takes them over the top. ( :

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  54. Dulce de leche and Nutella-I almost passed out! Two of my favorite baking ingredients. We're baking these for Christmas! gorgeous!

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  55. Sommer these cookies are awesome, perfect for the holidays and dulce de leche...I LOVE LOVE dulce de leche, I have six cans in my pantry, hey a girl's gotta be ready or anything, lol

    sweetlife
    yum!

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  56. I wish I had your spirit. I'm not in love with the holidays. I like them but not as much as you love them. I love the combo of ingredients and of course, nutella, is my favorite.

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  57. Ha- I do the same thing with the tree - they always bust me though! Our tree isn't very decorator style but I do like to move all the ornaments to balance the tree rather than leave them hanging on the bottom third as they like to do.

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  58. those cookies look awesome, u have a suprise waiting in my blog---do collect !

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  59. Nutella and dulce de leche sounds like a divine ombo to me :-) I could imagine the taste with the sea salt sprinkle on top...yummm..
    I love baking cookies for the holidays too ;-)

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  60. Those look fabulous Sommer and I could not agree more about every cookie starting out as a shortbread. Happy belated Thanksgiving. I have not been around the blog circuit much the last couple of months so I'm trying to get caught up!

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  61. Sounds so good. And looks amazing.

    I have that same spirit. I was doing a little happy dance when it snowed today. People look at me like I am strange. Its so festive!

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  62. You had me at nutella! These look so delish!!

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  63. Holiday cookies are a great way to get into the spirit. Dulche de Leche looks so much better in thumprints than jam! And the sea salt is a great touch.

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  64. Oh My Word!!! What are you doing to me...:)My mouth is watering! Dulce de Leche and Nutella, I scream for it!Your cookies look so cute--Simply Beautiful :)

    Aldy.

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  65. Wow....wow! these cookies look so wonderful that I can hardly bear to think about how they would taste. So festive and something that would be completely worth indulging with during the holidays!

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  66. I'm always looking for new cookie recipes - YUM! I don't imagine they last long....

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  67. I love these...and love the flavor! Too funny with the Holidays, I'm good as long as the Christmas music comes the day after Thanksgiving. I hate that they try and squeeze them ;0
    These are delightful!

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  68. 4 sticks of butter? FOUR? That's a stick per dozen. That's 3/4 of a tablespoon per cookie. Or something like that. Wow. These must be absolutely amazing. (They sure do look it.)

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  69. Hey now...these look awesome. I think my son will go for these.

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  70. Oh my - these look so amazing.

    Susan You Go Girl! www.ugogrrl.com

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