Archive for: nutella
Nutella is a delicious – and addictive – chocolate hazelnut spread that is popular just about everywhere. As it has become more popular (here in the US, at least), I have noticed similar spreads popping up that feature different nuts. For instance, I’ve seen chocolate-peanut spreads and chocolate-almond spreads. I attribute the popularity of these other flavors to the popularity of these other nuts, as hazelnuts themselves aren’t nearly as commonly found in baked goods as peanuts, almonds or pecans are. That said, most nuts go very well with chocolate and I can pretty much guarantee that you would not be disappointed to find a jar of this homemade Chocolate Almond Spread in your kitchen.
The spread is made with almonds and milk chocolate, with a little bit of sugar, cocoa powder and salt to give it a little sweetness and depth. The whole thing is made in the food processor, and you’ll definitely need to use one to get a smooth, creamy texture in your spread. It is a lot like Nutella, but it has a mild almond flavor to it that goes very well with the milk chocolate. In short: it is simply delicious. You can use it just like Nutella, too, spreading it on pancakes, toast, cookies or just eating it with a spoon.
You can either toast the almonds yourself or buy them toasted, and you can use whole or sliced. I prefer to use almonds without skins since they turn out a (very) slightly smoother finished product, but it actually doesn’t make much of a difference and you won’t see the color of the skins in the spread if you choose to leave them on. If you need to smooth out your spread a little more, add in a little extra oil while the food processor is running, but otherwise you just need to be patient and let the spread blend for a few minutes. You’ll be well-rewarded in the end.
As long as it isn’t too warm out, I will typically keep a batch in an airtight container or jar and leave it on the counter in my kitchen for a few days. I can usually (with a little help!) eat through a batch within a week or so. The spread will firm up too much if you don’t keep it in an airtight container – and if that happens, you can warm it up in the microwave in a few seconds.
Biscoff is a delicious brown sugar and spice, peanut butter-like cookie spread that is gaining fans rapidly. The spread is become more widely available, and while similarities to Nutella and peanut butter make the idea of spreading it on toast or crackers easy, more and more people are wondering what else they can do with this stuff. The answer is that you can do a lot of things, but you have to get a little creative because there aren’t all that many recipes out there yet that call for Biscoff. These Self Frosting Biscoff Cupcakes are a delicious and easy place to start.
One of my favorite Nutella recipes is for Self-Frosting Nutella Cupcakes, a recipe that I’ve been making on a regular basis for years now. The pound-cake like cupcakes are not too sweet and have a topping of Nutella swirled right on top of the batter before they bake. Biscoff is used in the same way here, swirled onto the top of the cupcake batter before baking. The result is tender, vanilla-laced cupcakes that have a sweet-spicy swirl of “frosting” baked right into the top.
The cupcakes get their tight, pound cake-like crumb from the amount of butter in the batter. Reducing it, in this particular recipe, will yield a more muffin-like result. The cake isn’t too sweet, and that really allows the sweet spread to stand out in every bite. The cupcakes keep well and are easy to store, since you don’t need to worry about frosting sliding around when you transport them. They’re a good everyday snack and they’re also pretty enough to serve at brunch or for dessert with coffee
Nutella is a creamy chocolate hazelnut spread that was developed in Italy and released in 1963. Since then, the spread has gained fans all over the world, including in the United States, where it is becoming ever-more popular. Nutella isn’t the only European spread gaining in popularity: Biscoff spread is a new treat that is rapidly gaining fans of its own.
Biscoff spread is a peanut butter-like spread made of speculoos cookies. Speculoos are buttery, brown sugar and spice-flavored cookies that are similar to gingersnaps and are popular in the Netherlands (and elsewhere). They’re traditionally served around the Christmas season. The spread is made of speculoos cookies (Biscoff brand, which are widely available) that are turned into a thick spread with the addition of sugar, vegetable oil and other all natural ingredients. The spread is smooth and creamy, with a deep brown sugar, butter and spice flavor to it. In other words, it is a spreadable cookie and it is delicious.
The spread isn’t available at all grocery stores, but many are starting to carry it and you can find it at markets that specialize in imported foods, as well as online. Trader Joe’s also recently started carrying it, packaged as “Speculoos Cookie Butter.” The spread is excellent on bread, biscuits or even simply spread onto crackers. You can work it into baking applications, too, using it in a similar way to peanut butter. The spread is addictive and you probably won’t have any problem coming up with new ways to use it in your own kitchen – including sneaking a spoonful or two straight from the jar.
Rice pudding is one of my favorite comfort food dishes. I almost always save leftover steamed rice, whether it is homemade or came from leftover Chinese takeout, so I know that I can whip up a batch when the mood strikes me. I usually make my rice pudding with vanilla and simply let the flavor of the milk shine through in the finished pudding, but if I’m looking for something even more indulgent, I bring some Nutella into the picture.
This Nutella rice pudding is made simply be stirring some Nutella into a batch of what would otherwise be plain rice pudding. The rich chocolate hazelnut spread adds a tremendous amount of flavor, leaving you with a very decadent dessert. To enhance the color of the pudding, as well as highlight the less-sweet chocolate notes of the Nutella, I added a small amount of cocoa powder into my rice pudding mixture. The thickness of your finished pudding will be influenced by the type of rice you use and I would recommend using a starchier, shorter-grain rice for the best results, but just about any rice will do the trick when the craving hits.
Now, I have to admit that I don’t find chocolate rice puddings to be quite as attractive as vanilla puddings, but a little bit of whipped cream – regular or Nutella flavored for any big Nutella fans out there – solves the problem nicely and dresses up the dessert. I used Nutella whipped cream on this batch, but even plain, unsweetened whipped cream can add a nice bit of contrast to a finished dessert in this case.
A bran muffin starts to sound a lot more delicious when you introduce Nutella into it. Don’t get me wrong – I have had some very good bran muffins, but I see many people turned off of them after eating dense, heavy, flavorless, overly oily or overly dry muffins. There is no cause for that and a good dose of Nutella is exactly what you need to turn anyone into a bran muffin fan. These Banana Nutella Bran Muffins are full of bananas and Nutella and are just waiting to win over a few new fans.
These muffins are moist, fluffy and light, but with a great combination of banana and chocolate flavors. The muffins themselves are fairly low in fat (only a small amount of oil in these), so they get a lot of richness and flavor from Nutella that is incorporated into the batter. Even with it in the batter, the Nutella flavor was fairly subtle in the finished product and took a back seat to the banana. I added a little cocoa powder to bring out the chocolate notes of the spread, then added about 2 tsp of Nutella to every muffin before baking and swirled it into the batter with a toothpick. It would have been nice to turn it into a topping, but the batter isn’t quite thick enough to provide a base for something like my Nutella Self-Frosting Cupcakes. I highly recommend serving these muffins with more Nutella. It might make them look a bit like frosted cupcakes from a distance, but a smear of Nutella on top of the muffins is the absolute perfect way to finish these off.
These muffins work well with both oat bran and with quick cooking oatmeal as the “bran” part of the muffins. Oatmeal adds a little more of a chewy texture than the bran does, and I have it on hand much more often than bran, so I tend to use it. Wheat bran will work, as well, but I find that oat has a slightly nicer flavor. The muffins will keep well and stay moist for several days when stored in an airtight container and you can freeze them and defrost them for a quick breakfast, too. Don’t forget the extra Nutella when you are ready to eat!