Friday, September 14, 2012

10 Facts to Know About Nutella...

    It's wonderful for sandwiching biscuits together for an instant treat and, mixed with whipped cream, it makes an insanely good mousse. But that evil mixture of chocolate and hazelnuts known as Nutella has no place in my pantry. On the rare occasions when I do buy a jar...blink, and it's gone. In fact, a photo exists in the family digital files of me spooning Nutella straight from the source.
    I adore the stuff. Occasionally I'll break down and have a Nutella croissant and recently, preceded by spring rolls, samosas and far too much rosé at the village night market, a Nutella crèpe passed my lips. That's all the four food groups, right?
    Some years ago, I was asked to write a magazine story about Nutella, which meant I had to buy several jars for research purposes.
    A few facts I remember, and some I've learned since:
    1) The happy result of combining chocolate and hazelnuts was originally discovered in Italy.
    2) During World War 11, a chocolate shortage led to the invention of a paste with chocolate and hazelnuts in it. (See where this is leading?)
    3) In 1964, it was named Nutella.
    4) Nigella Lawson has a recipe for Nutella cake that uses an entire jar.
    5) The most colossal, humungous jar that I've ever seen in a supermarket was a massive 5 kilos.
    6) You can be a Facebook friend of Nutella.
    7) Nutella is made by the same company that makes Ferraro Rocher chocolates.
    8) You can waste a pleasant hour exploring the various national sites for Nutella (all linked through ). Italy can have you collecting limited edition decorative jars. The UK site includes a recipe for a Nutella-and-banana breakfast wrap. Hmm. Have to think about that one. Best of all is the Moroccan site, which lets you draw a digital message on digital toast, using a digital knife that you dip in a digital jar.

     9) Here, in France, you can buy jars of Nutella in several sizes, and also, at the checkout, miniature packs of Nutella with biscuits to dip in them.
     10) You can find cookbooks containing nothing but recipes that use Nutella. 

   And, finally, to finish, some Nutella images...
 This is actually Spanish Nutella, shot on location in St. Sebastian. Note the wee jars on top of the stacks of big ones.
   A boulangerie in Lavelanet has a permanent sign outside advertising its specialties. What more can I say except that writing this post has given me a deep desire to go and buy a jar.


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