Ode to Nutella

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So here’s the thing.

I’ve always thought of myself as a chocolate purist. Not exactly a snob, mind you, but I definitely prefer my chocolate desserts– baked goods, ice cream, straight-up bars–to taste intensely chocolatey. And while peanut butter, coconut, coffee, raspberries, and even cinnamon all pair really nicely with chocolate, in my opinion, I’ve never really cared for the cocoa-hazelnut combo, so resisting the omnipresent Nutella–favored by all of my other chocolate loving friends and family members– was never very difficult. It’s overpowering, I maintained. It’s simply too sweet.

But something happened last last week during our lovely Riverwalk breakfast. Lily and I were sharing a plate full of migas, sweet potato tots, fruit, and vanilla-malt pancakes when I spotted a jar of Nutella next to the jam. Just a smear, I swore. We’re on vacation– and it’s high time that Lily has a taste of chocolate.

Immediately, she was smitten– and, shockingly, so was I. And for the remainder of our trip, I couldn’t help but imagine the possibilities I’d been ignoring for so many years: Nutella as frosting! Nutella on ice cream! Pretzels dipped into Nutella! To be honest, I’m not really sure how I let this happen. Maybe my tastes have changed. Maybe I’ve gotten lazy, and the idea of making my own spreadable chocolate sounds like too much work. Or maybe, just maybe, I made a colossal mistake years ago when I decided hazelnuts and cocoa were not a match made in heaven.

Regardless, I realized right away that I had lots and lots of catching up to do, so I stopped at the grocery store on my way back home from San Antonio and picked up the biggest jar I could find. I spread the stuff on my pancakes (dinner) and on my strawberries (dessert), and immediately began searching for the most incredible and decadent recipe I could find. And while I found some incredible concoctions (hello, Nutella brownies: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/everyday-italian/gianduja-bars-recipe/index.html), it eventually occurred to me that perhaps the very best vehicle for Nutella is… well, Nutella.

Then, magically, I found this- http://hauteapplepie.com/2011/05/18/nutella-brownies/— a three-ingredient recipe that does just that. Mix one egg, 1/2 cup Nutella, and 5 tablespoons of flour, pour into mini muffin tins, and bake for 12 minutes at 350, and you have these perfect little dessert bites. I had some anxiety about using– and potentially wasting!– so much of my spread (the precious!) in an un-tested recipe, so I only used a combination of 1/4 cup Nutella and 1/4 cup of peanut butter, sprinkled in a handful of dark chocolate chips, and subbed in quinoa flour for white. I let them cool for a few minutes and then let them firm up in the fridge for a little while… and proceded to eat half of the batch straight out of the pan in 30 seconds flat.

I did, of course, spread just a little extra Nutella on top for good measure.

You understand.

I’m making up for lost time, after all :).


5 Responses to “Ode to Nutella”

  1. Love the sound of the little Nutella bites! Try it on toast for breakfast. It’s enough to make you want to get up in the morning.

  2. I was never sure, until now, just what Nutella was, and always a little apprehensive about trying it, but now “I gotta get me some!” Sounds like something I would like–where will I find it, in the peanut butter section??

    • Yep, it’s usually with the peanut butter. Marilyn, it’s amazing! And it, like me, you fear it isn’t going to satisfy your taste for chocolate, it tastes especially good right from the spoon with a sprinkle of chocolate chips on top :).

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