A little change from my usual posts under this category.

Just thought I’d share an indulgent gourmet make with you – chocolate and hazelnut spread.

I’ve had it amongst my recipe books since last Christmas (it was a Christmas food supplement in an Essentials magazine).

The recipe came under the title Gourmet Goodies, as an easy and tasty Christmas gift to make for the chocoholics among your friends and family.

Well, I’ve not tried it out as a gift, but made it for my kids (and chocoholic hubby). Of course they love a certain well-known brand of hazelnut spread but Mum here doesn’t like the fact that it contains palm oil for starters.

I wasn’t sure how I’d stand up to my famous rival but, hey, the kids LOVE it and have asked for more.

Now, I’ve kept the  dark chocolate not too dark for the children but I’m sure you could ring the changes by choosing very dark choc, or I reckon chocolate with orange or even mint would work a treat for some adult indulgence – it’s up to you to experiment.

Note, this recipe makes 3 jam jars full (3 x 300ml), so if you haven’t got 3 ravenous kids who’ll devour them in as many days, just divide the quantites by 2 or 3.

It’s ready in 15 mins (plus cooling).

Here’s the recipe:

200g blanched hazelnuts (or buy ready-ground hazelnuts and skip step 1 below)

200g dark chocolate (the recipe used Bournville, I used Nestlé dessert for the kids, wasn’t sure they’d appreciate the darker chocolate), broken into squares

397g tin of condensed milk

4 tbsp sunflower oil

1. Heat the oven to Mark 4 /180°C. Toast the hazelnuts in the oven for 5 mins until slightly golden. Leave to cool, then whizz in a food processor until very finely ground.

2. In a pan, gently melt the chocolate with the condensed milk and sunflower oil. Stir until well combined, then add to the food processor with a pinch of salt and 6tbsp hot water. Blend until the mixture becomes a spreadable consistency. Transfer to sterilised jars, leave to cool and seal.

Store in the fridge and use within one month (it’ll never last that long!).

I’ve just made my second batch of three jars (with the help of my little girl – kids will love helping with this one!). I didn’t have enough ground hazelnuts so added some walnuts (about 75g) which I toasted and ground myself, doesn’t affect the taste, so think about using different nuts if you’re feeling adventurous.

I’m planning to try a jar with a much darker chocolate than Nestlé (only 52% cocao), maybe with orange bits…I’ll let you know.

Enjoy!

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