It's time again for Secret Recipe Club reveal day for my group, Group D! What is Secret Recipe Club? It's a bunch of food bloggers separated into four groups that post once a month on a designated Monday. Each month, we are paired with another foodie from our group secretly (hence the name). We then pick a recipe (or two or more) from that blog and make it. On our reveal day, we reveal whose blog we had and what recipe(s) we chose all at the same time. It's like a Secret Santa every month, but with food and blogs! It's a great deal of fun :)
This month, I was paired with Nora of Natural Noshing. Nora's blog focuses on putting a healthy twist on recipes. She eats gluten free and refined sugar free, so if you made a resolution to be GF, refined sugar free, vegan, or vegetarian in 2015 - you definitely want to stop by her blog. Even though my family doesn't go out of the way to eat gluten free, refined sugar free, vegan, etc., I found tons of recipes that I want to make off of Nora's blog.
There's this Java Chip Smoothie - hello, yes! Turkey Stuffed Peppers look very good - I mean, you cannot go wrong with a stuffed pepper. Chicken with Bruschetta Veggies is something I cannot wait to try when my stupid chicken aversion goes away. I love seeing the different colors of veggies on that plate. Although not her own recipe, but a Secret Recipe Club recipe, I still would love to try the Chicken Florentine Meatballs. This Breakfast Scramble has kale and that means it already is going to be a favorite in our house. This recipe for Zucchini Bread caught my eye because of the nuts on top and its rustic look! If I ever get around to making breakfast again, I will be making Nora's Cinnamon Cappuccino Sour Cream Muffins. And the recipe that ALMOST won out from the one I chose was the Baked Quinoa with Pumpkin and Banana. I never ever get sick of pumpkin and I've been wanting to use quinoa in a baking recipe rather than savory recipes for a while now. I feel like all self-control would be out the window if I made this recipe though.
In the end, Chocolate Hazelnut Spread won out. I have always wanted to make homemade Nutella. I have had my Ninja system for a while and so it was time to break it out to make some homemade spread! I adapted Nora's recipe and did use refined sugar. I also added honey to the mix. Honestly, I could not tell you if I made it gluten free or not...or if any of it counts for being vegan/vegetarian, but I can tell you that it was quite amazing.
I want to try it again with utilizing less granulated sugar and toasting the hazelnuts prior to processing. I think it would turn out a little less gritty with those adjustments, but honestly, it was still every bit as amazing as I expected it to be. I filled a pint size mason jar with my spread and used the remainder in a no-bake cheesecake recipe for my daughter's birthday dessert that evening since we were having a family get-together to celebrate with cake and presents over the weekend. It was very very good in the recipe!
What you need:
- 2 1/2 cups raw hazelnuts (can toast prior to processing, I didn't)
- 2 Tbsp. EVOO
- 1/3 cup coconut milk
- 5 Tbsp. cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar (may need more)
- 2 to 3 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 to 2 Tbsp. honey (may need more)
- 1/4 tsp. sea salt
- In a food processor, process nuts for 5 to 6 minutes until they turn into a creamy nut butter. During this time, stop to scrape the side of your food processor.
- Add oil and process for a minute or until smooth.
- Add milk, cocoa, sugar, vanilla, honey, and sea salt. Process for about 5 to 10 more minutes. You'll want to get it nice and smooth and also the right amount of sweet. I found that granulated sugar made it kind of gritty, so I started adding some honey to sweeten it up without that grittiness.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge.
Recipe adapted from Natural Noshing
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