I need to empty my kitchen cupboards. The very cupboards that are so full of things that normal people just don't have lying around the house. The cupboards that require a hope and a helmet to open because they are bursting with two types of tapioca, a hunk of mexican chocolate, every type of legume ever identified, nuts galore (perhaps I am a squirrel?), and every item that was ever created and infused with truffle (buy the oil, skip the honey). Those cupboards.
I also need some new menu items at Chez Djupe. I'm bored.
This is what I decided to make:
First thing you need to know about homemade Nutella: This needs to be done a few hours before the hunger strikes.
Second thing you need to know about homemade Nutella: This recipe makes a whole lotta Nutella. It has a short shelf life too. If you don't like sharing with friends, cut the recipe in half.
Third thing you need to know about homemade Nutella: It is more delicious and satisfying than the original and easily adapted to fit your diet, your pantry ingredients, your whims and fancies.
I wanted Nutella crepes. The prep list for this craving should be:
- make crepe batter;
- make nutella and let it refrigerate for an hour or more;
- make your crepes and fill'em up.
I substitute enough ingredients when I make this recipe, that I try to stick with weight measurements instead of cups, etc. If you don't own a scale, click through to David's version.
This is a substitution friendly recipe. I write more about this at the bottom.
1.5 ounces almonds, whole, sliced or otherwise, but preferably not blanched
5.75 ounces hazelnuts
1 3/4 cup whole milk (I love Snowville Creamery)
1.25 ounces powdered milk (or instant dry milk - which is not quite as powdery)
3 Tablespoons honey (you can use more or less, depending on how sweet your chocolates are)
pinch of salt
5-6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
5-6 ounces milk chocolate, chopped (David Lebovitz recommends choosing one that is at least 30% cacao solids)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. Toast those nuts until browned (on separate sheet trays because they toast at different rates) for 10-15 minutes, shaking occasionally. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the skins from the hazelnuts. I want to tell you that I just rubbed them between my hands and the skins fell off, but since I am talking about nuts, that seems wholly inappropriate. Some people fold them into a towel and rub vigorously. I was not some people.
- Bring both types of milk, honey and salt to a boil. Remove from heat.
- Melt chocolates - some people use a microwave to do so, I use a metal pan over a pot of simmering water.
- In a food processor, blend the nuts until they are as smooth as possible. Add chocolate and process until blended. Add milk mixture and process until everything is completely blended.
- Strain your nutella mixture and store in jars. Your nutella may seem very thin and liquidy at first, but it will thicken after it has been refrigerated for a few hours.
- When you are not eating your nutella in crepes, on banana bread, on shortbreads, from a spoon, knife or fork, then you should keep it in the fridge where it will keep for at least a week. I threw a jar in the freezer to see how that holds up - I will update this once I have some answers.
Okay, now that I have given you a starting place, let's talk substitutions.
- Use the almonds, or replace with hazelnuts, cashews, etc. Our completely hazelnut version of Nutella (the left spoon in that first picture) was not quite as mellow as the version with almonds (the lighter version on the right), but it was still mighty awesome.
- Use bittersweet chocolate or substitute with semi-sweet (and decrease the honey). For one version, I used extra bittersweet chocolate and added a bit more honey and it was still delicious.
- Use a low fat milk, a low fat powdered milk or stick with the full fat versions OR substitute both milks for a nut milk and make this VEGAN. (If you are one of those people that feels compelled to talk about bacon whenever you hear vegan, then maybe we should stop a minute and think how much awesome complexity that extra nut flavor could add.)
- Whatever you do, make sure you smell that powdered milk before you use it. If it smells bad - from cheesy to rotten chicken-ish - throw it out and buy fresh.
1 cup whole milk
6 Tablespoons water
1 cup flour (all-purpose or pastry flour)
pinch of table salt
3 Tablespoons butter, melted
2 Tablespoons sugar (omit if you want savory crepes)
1 teaspoon vanilla (omit if you want savory crepes)
- Mix all ingredients in a blender until smooth - about 10 seconds.
- Refrigerate your batter for at least 2 hours and up to a few days. (The resting time in the refrigerator allows the air bubbles to work out & the gluten to relax which means your crepes should be less likely to tear while you are cooking and more likely to be delicate)
- Heat your crepe pan, non-stick skillet (with very few scratches so that the batter doesn't stick), cast iron skillet, or tortilla pan over medium heat. Lightly butter the pan (the butter should sizzle but not brown).
- Add crepe batter to the pan while gently rolling from side to side so that the batter spreads itself to a uniform thinness.
- After about 30 seconds, the edges will have a few bubbles and look done. Spread your nutella, fruit or other toppings on the top 1/3 of the crepe circle.
- Gently fold your crepe in half or quarters and move gently to a plate. Or roll it like a stuffed cigar. Or make a crepe burrito.
Or you could just eat your nutella on banana bread. Twitter friends suggested that "a spoon, strawberries, shortbread & flesh are the best conductors of nutella." or to eat it "w/a spoon, w/a fork, w/a knife, w/ur finger" The final Twitter words of wisdom on this subject: "It won't be good with olives or pickles. I think everything else is a GO."