Sometimes we just need chocolate. That was my thinking this past week when I was debating what cake I would bake for dessert for our Friday night dinner. But just chocolate wasn’t enough. I like to use unusual flavors in my baking, and nuts are typically on the top on my list.
Hazelnuts are a staple in Italian households. They are as common as walnuts, and we enjoy them frequently. It’s no surprise that Nutella, the best hazelnut chocolate spread, originated in Italy; and that gianduiotto, a specialty chocolate that blends together cocoa and hazelnuts, comes from the Piemonte region. In the United States hazelnuts are quite expensive so I buy them only when I know I need them for a recipe. During COVID, though, I don’t have the same luxury to impulsively go to the store to shop. So, I’ve been making sure to have hazelnut flour at home in case I want to add some flavor – and protein – to my baking.
Armed with the goal of combining chocolate and hazelnut, I researched conventional websites and baking books, and my Evernote – on which I have saved approximately 600 recipes – for the best combination of flavors. I took ideas from several different recipes and adapted them to be gluten-free, and the result was this delicious and rich Gluten-free Chocolate Hazelnut Cake with Whipped Chocolate Ganache filling and Chocolate Glaze.