Why oh why did no one tell me about the wonders of chocolate hazelnut spread! I had heard rumours of homemade vegan recipes floating around the internet and even spotted one in Veganomicon but for some reason I put the idea in the back of my mind. I never grew up eating Nutella, I was more of a peanut butter and honey girl and for some reason the thought of spreading chocolate on my morning toast just didn’t seem overly appetizing. Little did I know that there’s a world of uses for chocolate hazelnut spread, not only can you spread it on your toast, but you can bake it into cookies, make frosting with it, turn it into truffles, add it into a crepes or just eat it by the spoonful.
Rich, dark, creamy and delicious, it’s no wonder this stuff is so unbelievable popular. Now I really don’t have any idea if this version tastes just like actual Nutella being as it’s been eons since I tried the stuff, but really, who gives a damn! It’s still one hell of a great recipe.
Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
Adapted from David Lebovitz
Makes approx. 2 cups
- 1 2/3 cup (200g) hazelnuts*
- 1 3/4 cup (400g) soymilk
- 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons (60g) powdered soymilk or coconut milk
- 3 tablespoons (40g) light agave
- pinch of salt
- 6 ounces (170g) semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 5 ounces (140g) dark chocolate, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF and spread nuts on a baking sheet, toast for 10 to 15 minutes or until brown, stirring a few times. Once the nuts are well-toasted, remove them from the oven and while still warm, place the hazelnuts in a clean tea towel, then fold them inside the towel and rub them vigorously to remove any loose skins.
2. While hazelnuts are roasting, mix together the soymilk, powdered soymilk, agave and salt in a small saucepan. Warm mixture just until it starts to boil, then remove from heat.
3. In a clean, dry bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water, or in a microwave, melt the chocolates together until smooth.
4. In a food processor, grind the warm hazelnuts until they’re as fine as possible, this will take a while so be patient.
5. Add the melted chocolate and continue to process the mixture, stopping to scrape down the sides of the work bowl, as necessary.
6. Once the mixture is smooth, add the warm milk mixture and process until everything is well-combined.
7. Transfer the mixture into two jars and refrigerate for a few hours until set.
*If you’d rather use hazelnut butter instead of hazelnuts, just replace by using the same weight.
Now go make yourself a chocolate hazelnut banana panini and you can thank me later. Or check back soon and I’ll show you some other ways to utilize this decadent spread.