Tim requested brownies with Nutella…Nutella (a rich creamy chocolate spread made with hazelnuts), is enjoyed by most Europeans like peanut butter is by Americans. I decided to make a Chocolate Hazelnut Brownie with a Nutella Buttercream Frosting topped with more Chopped Roasted Salted Hazelnuts.
The brownies are rich and moist with a nice crunch from the roasted chopped hazelnuts. The Nutella Butter Cream adds a creamy smooth layer with a satisyfing chocolatey hazelnut flavor.
The addition of the Chopped Roasted Salted Hazlenuts add even more crunch and a slightly salty addition to the sweet frosting. Here is how you can make your own:
Start with the brownie. You can find the entire brownie recipe here.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line an 8″x8″ pan with aluminum foil, leaving about an inch over-hang on two sides. I sprayed the foil with Pam to ensure a non-stick surface.
Set pan aside. Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa (I used dark Dutch-Process Cocoa) and salt in a heat proof bowl set over simmering water (or use a double-boiler).
Stir until the mixture is melted and combined. Remove bowl from heat and let cool slightly then stir in the eggs one at a time until the batter is smooth and shiny. Mix in the vanilla then add the flour and mix until well blended.
Add in the chopped nuts if using. I used chopped, roasted hazelnuts. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes. Let brownies cool in pan.
While brownies are cooling make the Nutella Butter Cream Frosting. You can find the entire recipe here.
Start by beating the butter with the Nutella in the bowl of an electric mixer using the paddle attachment. By the way, this plunger-style measuring cup makes easy work of sticky foods like honey, peanut butter and Nutella!
Add in the confectioners sugar until a thick paste forms. Add in the vanilla extract (I added a little Chocolate Hazelnut extract & 1/4 tsp. salt).
The recipe calls for a 1/3 of a cup of milk, but I added just enough milk to create a semi-thick consistency to the frosting. Set the finished frosting aside.
Roast another 1 cup of hazelnuts until lightly browned and fragrant. Coarsely chop the warm nuts and toss with some sea-salt to taste. Set aside.
Top the cooled brownies with a generous helping of Nutella Butter Cream Frosting, spreading evenly over the brownie. Sprinkle the chopped salted hazelnuts over the frosting and press slightly to make them stick. Cut the finished brownies into pieces and serve!