SHF # 4: Let's Go Nuts! Nutella

Well, what do you say, wanna go NUTS? I sure did! When the lovely Viv over at Seattle Bon Vivant announced January's theme for this Sugar High Friday I clapped my little hands, chirping "Oh goody! Almond cake? Baklava?..." to myself.

Then came Christmas. And January. And uh-oh...What to make, what to make? Will I even be able to come out from my weird world of not doing anything else but studying for my exam??

Oh yes I will. I shall not miss this - I SHALL NOT!!

And then I thought about it. And thought some more. Because actually - I'm not that big in nuts. I mean, hand me a piece of cake that's got nuts in it, and I won't be all: NO WAY! - I mean, it's cake! But I don't find myself putting nuts in all my cakes and pastries. More often than not, I leave them out if they're in a recipe. I do almonds, and I like almonds. I think I've just had to many bad (read: rancid) experiences with nuts.

But what I really like about these events is how they make you think about a lot of things you could do, and then you end up doing something completely different - and of course the fact that they are often a bit challenging. So I had, obviously, very little time, and no need for a challenge I'd have to re-do the next day. And then it hit me, from out of nowhere - hazelnuts!

Equals NUTELLA! Ha! There we go!

I've made this recipe before, so it's tried and tested and tasted - but I gave the recipe to a friend (who's usually skilled enough in the kitchen) and it just didn't turn out well. I'm writing this seconds after I finished it, so I might put an update in here as to how it went after refrigeration... The taste was nice - no mistaking, it's chocolate and hazelnuts and not much else, but boy is it gooooood! I like this idea of doing commercial products myself and getting stuff that's miles better then what I can buy!

Here goes nuts! from Morten Heiberg
180 g. hazelnuts
250 g. milk chocolate (or dark, but use a little less if you go for dark) - finely chopped.
½ vanilla pod
2 tablespoons honey
1 dl. cream

Toast the hazelnuts on a baking sheet in a 180 C hot oven. When they start giving of that nice toasty smell, pour them straight into a food processor. Pulse for a couple of seconds, then add the chocolate and the seeds from the vanilla pod. Pulse again, the idea being that the heat from the nuts will melt the chocolate. Add the honey and cream, pulsing briefly.

Store in the fridge for up to 10 days.

I'll eat it on toast or put it on ice cream, or on Digestive bisquits - or just lick it of a spoon!

Hopefully I'll be back soon from the unwanted leave of absence from my blog here, to check all of the adventurous things you're doing out there in the food-blogging world. Meanwhile, books are calling again... Man, sometimes I think they're worse than having a baby!;-)


Anonymous said…
Wow, homemade nutella! I somehow never even imagined making it rather than buying it. It sounds so good, and I think you're right about all homemade things being better than their purchased counterparts. Does it really only stay good for one week? As much as I love nutella, I don't think I could get through a whole jar by myself in one week. I suppose it would be pretty easy to find some help, though. :)
LeeLoreya said…
The element that makes homemade food such as pastes so good is that they still have flaws: my hoummous has tiny bits of chickpeas and coriander, my homemade peanut butter is crunchy enough, my grandmother's jam tastes so much like home, and I can see on your pic those little bits of hazelnuts in the jar. You only get what you put in it, no strange E312 or other digit-ingredients.
And don't you think that Hazelnut is such a poetic word? Hell, it's so pretty that it could even be someone's name.
Niki said…
Hazelnuts are my favourite nut, and I'm not a big nut eater. In fact, I'm sitting here right now drinking a coffee, to which I've added pure hazelnut essence...yum! So, making nutella, wich is such a memory of childhood is just a FABULOUS idea. My brother and I were only allowed to eat nutella when we visited our Italian grandparents. My brother liked it on bread but it was too dry and gummy to have on bread for me. I preferred it just heaped onto a spoon and licked off if I was patient...gobbled down if I was greedy. I hvan't changed really...
Cathy said…
Zarah - your nutella sounds so good (and easy)! Good luck with your exam!
Anonymous said…
Zarah, bless you, bless you for posting a recipe for homemade Nutella. :) It's so enticing that I can't even begin thinking about it. Nutella is something I've loved since I was a kid and now that I have my own kid, I still keep a jar of it in my pantry for quick chocolate fixes. I also love it on bread. :) BTW, what's dl in the metric system? I don't think I have a conversion for that. Thanks.
Anonymous said…
dL is deciLiters or the same as 0.1L.
Nic said…
I'm very impressed! Nutella is one of those things that I assumed no one really made - just purchased (like peanut butter). I like to put it on waffles. Yum!
Anonymous said…
Wow, Zarah! What a great idea! Of course, I have to ask, being allergic to you think it would work with other nuts? Something hard like hazelnuts perhaps such as almonds maybe? Or could it be done with pecans? I think I might try this out as S. loves nutella but gave it up when we started dating...perhaps I have chanced upon a good birthday present for him next month! Let me know what you think if you can afford to climb out of the books anytime soon. Good luck with them!

Jennifer -
Cerebrum said…
Wow, guess I'm not the only one that likes Nutella! First off, thanks for all the nice comments - second, I'll try and answer some of your questions:

Re: use-by date
I think the short expiration date is due to the cream in the recipe. But - I actually think it would be possible to do it without the cream - in fact I think the result might be better! The thing is, as soon as you put it in the fridge it goes pretty solid, which makes it difficult to spread. Ommiting the cream would make it possible to keep it out of the fridge and hence, more spreadable. I noticed too on making it this time, it actually kind of seizes when you add the cream in the food processor - so again, omitting it might make for a smoother consistency... I'll give it a try next time around, or if anyone beats me to it, let me know!

Hazelnut - it could definetly be someone's name. That's what I'll nickname my daughter if I ever have one!

Dl - yes! Deciliters, 0,1 liter. And, um.. Might I ask who you are?

Re: other nuts
I'll say go for it Jennifer! I'd personally make sure they weren't blanched (is that the word? - when they don't have that thin papery "shell" on them!), more because I think toasting blanched nuts would make for an undesired toastiness. Being an almond lover myself, that's what I'd go for too.

And thanks for all the well-wishing about my exam - come the 21st. (YAY, and IMBB # 9!) it's o-v-e-r - well, at least until another 4-5 months!
Linda said…
Hi Zarah Maria. Like others have commented, I never thought about making nutella before. This is a great recipe and it looks delicious. What a terrific idea! Thanks for the inspiration and enjoy it!
Niki said…
I remember asking a while back what you used to post your photos. Now I have downloaded Hello/Blogger Bot and I have to on earth do you include more than one photo in a post??? I recall you said it was difficult.
I really want to persevere with this, as each time I've tried Hello I've decided it was all too hard and gone back to Flickr (which is great! But their photo sizes aren't great for Blogger). Please satisfy my (grumpy!) curiosity!!
Anonymous said…
So I should probably tell you that there's (I don't know how it happened, but) still some left in the fridge and it hasn't gone bad, not even with the cream in it! Great! 

Posted by ZarahMaria
Anonymous said…
I have only had the commercial Nutella which I am not crazy about, but yours sound delcious! I do have a question. As an American, I do not know metric measurements. What is the dl in the cream measurement?

Posted by Sue
Anonymous said…
Oops! Read all the comments after I posted. I now know what dl is. 

Posted by Sue
Anonymous said…
Oh my, my, my... I really have to try this one :)  

Posted by Martine la banlieusarde
Anonymous said…
I just made a nutella-like spread with organic peanut butter, honey, cocoa, pure vanilla extract and milk in a food processor and it is fabulous. The texture is smooth and creamy like the real thing and it didn't seize up at all. I would rather use almond or cashew butter but I had just the peanut butter on hand. Any nut would work I'm sure. I think if I used hazelnuts I would process them into a smooth paste with some oil first and then add the rest of my ingredients. Let me know what you think if anyone tries it!
Anonymous said…
blessed be, you inspired me. I have been dreaming of transfat free nutella...
homemade nutella, non-dairy, so should be shelf stable.

16oz Bazzini roasted hazelnut butter (ing. roasted peeled hazelnuts, peanut oil),
1.5 bags of Ghiridelli double chocolate chips,
.5 cup Droste dutch cocoa powder,
.75 cup superfine sugar.
Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave, 15 sec at a time, take care not to burn it. Stir until fully melted, then mix in the hazelnut butter.
I was just going to stop here & jar it up, but after tasting I thought it needed a more intense chocolate presence & a touch more sweetness, so I added the cocoa & sugar.
Now to go put in in jars & toss it in the cabinet!
Anonymous said…
Great idea Zarah.

I'm completely addicted to Nutella. So much so that I fear learning how to make it. Seriously, I'll never leave my home and eventually OD on the stuff.

Only kidding (I think).... I'm gonna try your recipe today. Wish me luck.

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