I first saw a recipe for homemade Nutella on Leite’s Culinaria at the start of the year. What a great idea! Like many people, I have such a soft spot for Nutella; it features in childhood memories, when I would sometimes get a Nutella sandwich or Nutella on tea biscuits as a treat. As an adult, I had mascarpone and Nutella ice cream in Italy, on a balmy June evening. One of the top ice cream moments of all time. I’ve also used Nutella in baking, to make these gianduia brownies.
Other brands of chocolate spread are available, of course, with varying degrees of deliciousness.
I finally got round to making my own Nutella – or Notella, if you will – just last month. I swapped plain chocolate for the milk chocolate, to make something a bit more sophisticated and less sweet, but otherwise I more or less followed the recipe on LC. I converted one cup of hazelnuts to 150g, and 12 ounces of chocolate to 300g – I figured those amount were close enough, and fit in well with the packet sizes of hazelnuts and chocolate, respectively. The end result really is the Nutella you know and love, but a bit thicker at room temperature – I found it needed a little warming up to make it spreadable. You can use it in any way you use the real thing, which by the way includes pressing it into service as an icing and filling for cakes.
It’s a slightly time consuming process, mainly due to the opening stages of toasting, skinning and cooling the hazelnuts, so you’d be forgiven for asking why you’d bother when you can buy Nutella right off the shelf and ready to use. If you’re asking that question, this recipe probably isn’t for you. There are some of us who want to do it just so that we can say we did, just to try to recreate something in our own kitchens. You can also be sure of exactly what’s in your chocolate hazelnut spread if you make it yourself – there are no added preservatives and you can make sure the chocolate and cocoa are Fair Trade, for example. You can also make the spread chunky or smooth, as you prefer, and toy with the sweetness by adding an extra pinch of salt along the way.
This was just the starting point in my Notella experiments – I have an even more exciting recipe to share with you on Wednesday, which was inspired by this one but, if you ask me, surpassed it. I look forward to posting it!