HEAT oven to 375ºF.
COMBINE shortening, brown sugar, milk and vanilla in large bowl. Beat at medium speed of electric mixer until well blended. Beat in egg and chocolate hazelnut flavored spread. Combine flour, salt and baking soda. Mix into shortening mixture until just blended. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. * If nuts are omitted, add an additional 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips.
DROP by rounded measuring tablespoonfuls 3 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheet.
BAKE 10 to 12 minutes. Cool 2 minutes on baking sheet on a cooling rack. Remove cookies to rack to cool completely.
VARIATION BAR COOKIES: HEAT oven to 375ºF. Follow recipe above to prepare dough. Spray a 13 x 9-inch pan with no-stick cooking spray. Spread dough evenly in pan.
BAKE 23 to 25 minutes or until top is golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean and center feels slightly firm to the touch. Cool completely before cutting into bars.
CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE: PLACE 3/4 cup semi-sweet chips with 1 1/2 teaspoons shortening in a resealable plastic bag; seal. Microwave on HIGH for 1 minute; knead bag. Continue in 10 seconds intervals, if necessary, until melted. Clip off corner of bag. Drizzle chocolate over cooled cookies or bars.