Posted in Cooking, Spreads, Sweets

Even Better Than The Real Thing

I was working on bulletin boards for my classroom tonight – and I got bored. Ha! Things just weren’t going my way, it was getting late, I’d already spent most of the day cranky. I decided to shut it down for the night and move on to something different, and hope for success elsewhere.

I made Nutella. It’s an idea I’ve toyed with for a long time, so I bought some hazelnuts this past shopping trip should the occasion to make Nutella arise. Avoiding work seemed like the perfect reason to try this recipe. If you have neighbours sharing a wall with you, I’d recommend doing this recipe at a more decent hour than 10:00 pm. It’s a little noisy. I’m sure if you offered to share though, they probably wouldn’t care all that much.

I skimmed the recipe and got started. Low and behold, I didn’t read closely enough. I didn’t have some of the ingredients that the recipe called for. So I made some amendments and swapped the confectioners sugar for white sugar, and the oil for lactose-free milk. I’ve come to this conclusion: Hazelnut + Chocolate = Perfection. This version is a little grittier and runnier than the original, but perfect just the way it is. Kind of like the natural version of Nutella. I deduce that this is because I don’t have an industrial strength food processor, I used too much liquid (because I didn’t measure) and I didn’t run the mixture through a sieve. I’m hoping it firms in the fridge over night. .

It made enough for a 1 cup mason jar for my fridge at home and a 1/2 cup mason jar for my fridge at work. It also made my house smell heavenly. It should last in the fridge for up to 2 weeks – if it takes you that long to get through it! Spread it on toast, fruit, mix some into hot chocolate – or just eat a spoonful.

Homemade Lactose-Free Nutella

Yield: 1 1/2 cups

Prep Time: 10 minutes | Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

1 cup hazelnuts
1/4 cup cocoa
4 tbsp lactose-free milk (or milk alternative)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt

Directions:

1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Spread the hazelnuts out on a baking sheet in a single layer. Toast the nuts in the oven for 10 minutes, until they are browned and fragrant.

3. Remove from oven and pour over a clean dish towel. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.

4. Gather the hazelnuts in the towel and rub vigorously to remove any loose skins. Not all the skins will come off, and that’s ok. Just try to get as much off as you can – it will help make the texture of the butter smoother.

5. Place the newly undressed hazelnuts in a food processor. Blend continuously until a smooth butter starts to form.

6. Heat the milk in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved.

7. Add the cocoa, salt and vanilla. Put the lid on and blend again.

8. While the food processor is running, slowly pour the milk and sugar mixture into the butter until a paste forms (you might not need all the milk).

9. Scrape down the sides and continue to mix until it reaches the consistency you’d like. You might want to run the mixture through a sieve if you’d like a smoother texture.

10. Portion into air-tight containers and refrigerate until cool. Enjoy!

(Adapted from How To Make Homemade Nutella by the Kitchn at http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-homemade-nutella-166472)

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