Taken and adapted from Handle the Heat
· 135g hazelnuts
· 340g milk chocolate
· 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
· 3 tablespoons icing sugar
· 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
· 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
· 3/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 170°C.
- Spread the hazelnuts on a greaseproof paper-lined baking tray. Toast the hazelnuts until they’re slightly browned, which takes about 10 minutes, but make sure they don’t burn or they will taste bitter. Once they’ve cooled a bit, remove the skins as best you can.
- Melt the chocolate in a bain marie and let cool.
- Use a food processor to grind the hazelnuts until they form a paste. Add the oil, sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla, and salt and continue to blend until the mixture is as smooth as possible. Add the melted chocolate and blend until smooth. If you don’t want hazelnut bits in it, pour it through a sieve into an airtight container.
Things to note:
The spread will keep for around two weeks in an airtight jar, according to the original recipe. I filled a 0.5L Kilner jar, which is actually quite a lot if you’re not planning to eat chocolate spread all the time, so it could be worth halving the ingredients, which makes it cheaper, and also reduces the potential waste.
Also, when I had blended everything together, someone asked me what kind of chocolate I’d used. I’d just received a giant bar of Milka and I’d used that to put it to good use instead of just eating it all, without thinking that it would contain palm oil, thus defeating the purpose of trying to make a palm oil free Nutella. But instead of pretending this didn’t happen, I thought I’d use it as a lesson. I’ve discovered how easy it is to run on autopilot and make mistakes like this – it just emphasises how present palm oil is in daily life. So next time, I will go out of my way to use palm oil free chocolate, which is apparently true of Marks and Spencers own brand milk chocolate or Divine chocolate if you’re feeling fancy. So next time I make it, I’ll have created an alternative that doesn’t carry the same amount of ecological guilt and is healthier (ish) for me.