Every time I am not around she tries all her wiles on whoever is around to get to the Nutella. Her grandparents are her usual victims for this. And they of course succumb to it, every single time she makes those puppy dog eyes! :-) She loves it in all its variations - straight up, between a sandwich, slathered on a chapati, or spread on a dosa and made into a roll. And her intake suddenly increases when Nutella is a star in the meal.
But I did not want her to eat so much of the canned stuff - especially since I knew that it was just junk filled with sugar. In fact as per the ingredient list, the first two ingredients in it are sugar, and edible vegetable oil. Nuts come only third in the list. So I decided to try my luck making a much healthier version at home, where I had control over the ingredients!
When I started out I never thought it would be this easy to make. Literally, all I needed was about 7-10 minutes. I did not have hazelnuts, so I substituted cashew nuts for it. If you want, you can use hazelnuts instead.
My husband and I - and more importantly my daughter - were very happy with the taste. In fact my daughter (who has super-sensitive taste buds) says that she likes my version much more than the store bought one. She has never asked me to buy Nutella after I started making it. Anyway without further ado, here's the short and sweet recipe.
1. Cashew nuts (dry roasted in a pan or microwave) - 200 gms
2. Cocoa powder (I used Hershey's cocoa powder) - 3 slightly heaped Tbsp - depends on how chocolaty you want to make it.
3. Sugar - 3 tsp - this can be adjusted to your taste.
4. Salt - a pinch
5. Oil (I used Canola) - 1 tsp
How to make it
First dry roast the cashew nuts in a pan. Set it aside to cool. Once it has cooled, put that in the blender, or mixie as we call it. Add the remaining ingredients except for the oil in the mixie, and blend. Depending on the size of your mixie, you may have to make this in two batches. When I blend, I start with power position 1 and then gradually shift to position 2.
Blend it for about 2 min and then open the jar, and scrape the sides. Rest for a minute and then again blend for 2 min.... Keep doing this in 1 to 2 min intervals. You need to give short 1 min rests so that the mixie doesn't overheat.
Once you see that the nuts have released their oils and it is creamy, you can add the oil to it and blend again for about a min. This helps it make ultra creamy, and spreadable - just like the store bought version.
Now scoop all that goodness into a clean jar, and relish it to the core knowing that it's not just yummy - it's healthy too!!!
Note: I don't refrigerate it. It can easily stay for more than a week even if it's not refrigerated in summer. Unfortunately I can only vouch for 1 week, as my daughter and husband managed to finish it within 1 week, no matter how much quantity I made! :-)
P.S: I look forward to your comments.