I don’t even remember when I had Nutella last time. Every time I pick up hazelnuts from the zero waste shop nearby I plan to make the homemade version. The problem with this idea that the hazelnuts disappear in no time from the cupboard and believe me I don’t buy petty quantities. We are a bit nuts but I have an emotional thing with hazelnuts. It reminds me for my grandma who had plenty of hazelnut trees in her garden. Ohh those blisters on the fingers from the nutcracker!
When I moved to Greece I fallen in love with the Nutella crepes though they have Merenda hazelnut spread there which is the Greek equivalent. They make damn good pancakes.
So finally I made it! And it taste great and I know what is inside. Palm oil free, dairy free, gluten free and hopefully guilt free too. It’s creamy, nutty, rich in chocolate.
It is quite simple recipe and doesn’t require many ingredients. Hazelnut oil, cocoa butter or vanilla can be optional and sweetener can be maple syrup, coconut sugar, coconut syrup or stevia instead of agave. Feel free to experiment.
It is an important step to roast the hazelnuts and get rid of their skin. The heat will bring out their aroma and taste and also makes easier to grind it into a smooth paste. The skin can be quite bitter so better without them. Many recipes suggest to roast in the oven but I prefer to do it in a pan as it drops off the skin with some shaking straight away and also this method saves some time.
Melt the chocolate on water bath. Mix the paste and the chocolate and blend, blend, blend…will take a while if you like it smooth and creamy as I do. If you’d like it extra smooth without any pieces strain it till its warm because later will become more firm. If you like some crunchy pieces thats fine too.
Try it with a croissant, waffle, pancake, muffin, cupcake or in a smoothie. Pair with banana for a split, dip your strawberries or put into your coffee for indulgence.