I love nutella straight from the jar and never think twice about buying it. But last winter the LA Times printed a recipe for homemade nutella and I was intrigued. Could something homemade mimic the real thing? The ingredients list is short and the instructions fairly simple so I decided to give it a try. The spread was somewhat more textured then the smooth cream of the store-bought version, but the taste was right on. Making it at home might not replace the ubiquitous grocery store spread but it’s an excellent alternative.
Homemade Chocolate Hazelnut Spread (Homemade Nutella)
adapted from the LA Times
2 cups raw hazelnuts
1/2 cup unsweetened good quality cocoa powder
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons hazelnut oil, more as needed
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spread the hazelnuts evenly over a cookie sheet and roast until they darken and become aromatic, about 10 minutes. Transfer the hazelnuts to a damp towel and rub to remove the skins.
2. In a food processor fitted with a blade, grind the hazelnuts to a smooth butter, scraping the sides as needed. About fine minutes.
3. Add the cocoa, sugar, vanilla, salt and oil to the food processor and continue to process until well blended, about 1 minute. The finished spread should have the consistency of creamy peanut butter; if it is too dry, process in a little extra hazelnut oil until the desired consistency is achieved. Remove to a container, cover and refrigerate until needed. Allow the spread to come to room temperature before using, as it thickens considerably when refrigerated. It will keep for at least a week.