February 16, 2012
I like Nutella, but as someone who is drawn to salty and savory foods rather than sweets, the combination of chocolate and peanuts is much more appealing. Unlike hazelnuts, which are naturally more sweet, peanuts seem bring out salty flavors while maintaining the richness of the chocolate.
Over the weekend, I made up a batch of chocolate-peanut spread using my favorite Nutella recipe. I like this recipe in particular because of its incredible spread-ability, even after days of refrigeration. It requires a few more steps than some of the other four-ingredient spreads, but it's worth the effort. To make, simply switch out the hazelnuts and almonds for roasted peanuts. You could even try this recipe using any nut, or combination of nuts, that you like.
This stuff is simple and delicious over toast, but you can use it for all sorts of things. For instance, my husband and I made sundaes for Valentine's Day dessert, and topped them with warmed chocolate-peanut spread, whipped cream, and roasted peanuts. Yeah. They were good.
1 2/3 cup roasted peanuts
1 3/4 cup whole milk
7/8 cup (or one package) powdered milk
3 tablespoons mild-flavored honey
pinch of salt
6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
5 ounces milk chocolate, chopped (at least 30% cacao solids)
Pour the nuts into a food processor, and process until they become a smooth paste, scraping down the sides when necessary. They'll be powdery at first, but just keep going. After 3 or 4 minutes in the food processor, they'll start to change consistency.
In a saucepan over medium-high heat, add the milk, powdered milk, honey, and a pinch of salt. Heat the mixture, stirring constantly, until it just begins to boil. Remove from heat and set aside.
In a double boiler (or a heatproof bowl over simmering water), melt the chocolates until completely smooth. Add the melted chocolate to the nut paste in the food processor, and pulse until smooth, making sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the food processor bowl once or twice to make sure everything is incorporated. Add the milk mixture and pulse until everything is well combined.
Funnel the mixture into sterilized jars, and store in the refrigerator for up to one month. The spread will be loose and runny while warm, but will stiffen into a nice, spreadable consistency after refrigeration. Eat on top of toast, scones, with fruit, or straight out of the jar.