If there was not a more perfect food, it would be one that combines chocolate and peanut butter. Most of us know this. But long before I came across this chocolate peanut spread (now more affectionately know in my house as peanutella), I was first introduced to Nutella. I was a 10 year old kid staying with near-strangers in a far-off land. It was my foreign exchange program trip to France and I felt so, so out of place…and more homesick than I could ever have imagined I would be. But the Nutella showed up on the breakfast table with some type of delicious bread every single morning and somehow, this eased the angst just a little. I don’t know how popular Nutella was in the States in the late-80s but we sure never had it in our house so this was certainly a special treat for me.
Shortly after I arrived home, my pen pal, Fabien, came to stay with us. And as foreign and revolutionary as Nutella was to me, peanut butter was to him. A food that my American house was never ever without, and this was truly his first time ever eating it! Needless to say, he had more than a couple jars of the good stuff packed in his suitcase when he headed back home.
This peanutella is the perfect way Kyle and I can enjoy Nutella without, you know, killing him from his tree nut allergy. It marries deep, dark chocolate with peanut butter and some sugar. And it’s heavenly. It spreads just like Nutella and gets all melty and smooth when spread on a freshly toasted piece of good bread. A few sliced strawberries or gawd, banana slices!? Or folded up in crèpes? Or slathered across some pancakes? Breakfast in a heartbeat. And great memories of some very dear friends as a bonus.
- 2 cups dry roasted peanuts
- 1/2 cup of dark unsweetened cocoa powder (like King Arthur Flour or Hershey's)
- 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon salt plus additional to taste
- 3 tablespoons peanut or canola oil
- Pour the peanuts into the bowl of a food processor and grind them for about 5 minutes. Then they’ll become more of a paste and finally, they’ll liquefy. Scrape down the sides as needed.
- With the processor off, carefully add the cocoa, sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt and two tablespoons of the oil to the bowl. Process until well blended, for an additional 1 minute. Add more up to another 1/4 teaspoon salt if needed. If the spread is too thick (you'll know), add the last tablespoon of oil.
- Stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container, the chocolate peanut butter spread will keep for a week or two. When it is full chilled it will become thick and spreadable.
source: adapted from Smitten Kitchen