A Tumultuous Love Story: Chocolate Hazelnut Spread (gf, v, non-processed, whole foods)

Oh, Nutella, how I’ve missed you so. I was a junior in high school when I found you – a sophisticated and expensive Italian import found only in speciality markets. I was young. And you were truly seducing. Ah, you, me and New York. We were great together.

You also remind me of the summer of my just-turned-20s, strolling the streets of Paris, crepe in hand. You had found me again. Romance & magic. C’est la vie, indeed!

Then suddenly you were everywhere…and you were cheap and fast and easy. Maybe too much time stateside ruined you? Back in those early days straight from Italy, I wonder if you were different. Were you once more whole? I’m not sure. I was young and superficial; I didn’t look beneath the surface as carefully as I do now. With age has come wisdom. I now read labels.

So I now know you’re no good for me. You’re a slick sweet talker: “you’re ‘healthy'”, and now that I’m older you’re “even good for my kid too”. Sure, you are…
Yes, cocoa and hazelnuts have some great health properties like good fats, lots of vitamins B and E, folic acid, & antioxidants but the first ingredient on your list is refined (probably gmo) sugar. Followed by bad naughty vegetable oil. You’re 13% hazelnuts, milk powder, and highly processed chocolate. So I had to let you go, liar. You’re toxic.

But I’m not gonna lie, I have missed that rich flavor of cocoa infused with that wonderfully nutty, sweet taste that is so uniquely hazelnut. No bread was ever needed though you’re lovely in a crepe a la those Parisian strolls we shared. But back in the states, a spoon is all I needed; I’m a low maintenance kinda girl. Always was and still am.

It’s been a long journey, of abstaining from you, and sporadically cheating with you – knowing you were no good for my health but being unable to resist. But I’ve finally found a new love. Tastes a little different, but simpler, and yummy, and truly good for me. Think the Aidan to your Mr. Big. No muss, no fuss, no flash. No lies. What you see is what you get.

The ‘Won’t Hurt You’, No Lies Chocolate Hazelnut Spread

1 cup hazelnuts, no skins
1 square pure cacao bar
1 cup almond milk
1/2 cup local raw honey or maple syrup
1 tbsp coconut oil
Pinch of salt

No toasting needed. Maintain the nutritional integrity of the nut by keeping it raw. No 10 different over-complicated steps either. Melt the cacao first then throw everything in your blender or food processor until smooth (or chunky – to each her own!). Pour in a bowl and put in the fridge until it sets up. At least an hour. And grab a spoon!

No additives, chemicals, GMOs, or refined processed products. Raw whole foods that feed you, body & soul.