I’m a fan of making things from scratch. Whenever I can, I seize the chance. Spending time on Pinterest and Buzzfeed looking at interesting and pinning interesting DIYs to try is a fun activity, yet most of them never come to life.
Except… When it’s food-related.
When it comes to food, I’m willing to try hard recipes especially if there’s an added value. My added value here is more nutritional value and less processed and unhealthy ingredients. I have been introduced to nut butters through food blogs I follow but some are unavailable here yet. So I had to put on the investigator’s coat and search at supermarkets and shops to buy some and taste. Let me add that they all have ingredients I can’t pronounce. The next step would be try making them at home, keeping in mind using no additives and artificial ingredients that the supermarket versions are loaded with.
I made this chocolate hazelnut spread many times before, but I never measured exactly what I put in. Last week, I made sure I write the exact ingredients down and keep them as simple as possible. Turns out, I can make a vegan version of Nutella with dark chocolate and without sugar or added fat.
EAT THAT, NUTELLA!
I prefer this version because Nutella is too sweet for me and dark chocolate wins my heart every time. I’d sacrifice that creamy sticky texture of Nutella, which is acquired by the use of fat and sugar, for the clear conscious of eating half a jar.
This photographed batch was tasted by friends and colleagues. It is love from the first… Spoon.
After demand, I decided to swap things on the list (inside my mind) and begin the series of spreads and butter with this extravagant natural vegan spread recipe with no added fat or sugar.
Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
- 3 cups hazelnuts
- 150g dark chocolate
- 1 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Pre-heat the oven to medium high
- Spread the hazelnuts evenly on a baking sheet
- Roast for 15-20 minutes until fragrant and dark
- On a double boiler, melt the chocolate and set aside
- Remove hazelnuts from the oven and peel*
- Grind in a food processor scraping the sides occasionally until the hazelnuts go from coarse ground to fine, lumps, coarse cream then finer cream. The process can take up to 20 minutes
- Add the cocoa powder and salt and blend
- Add the melted, slightly cooled chocolate and blend until well incorporated. Don’t worry about the runny texture, it’ll harden once cooled.
- Divide into jars and store in the refrigerator.
*wrap in a kitchen towel and rub vigorously. Blow the peels away or pick the peeled hazelnuts. Peel the rest by hand and don’t worry about stubborn peel. Use peel in your compost or with the plants’ soil.