Sunday, March 25, 2012

homemade avocado nutella

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Avocado is the secret to much food happiness in my life. When Nate's not around, I live on avocado as my primary healthy fat and protein source. Last week I used inspiration from Pinterest to make an avocado grilled cheese sandwich, but I upped the ante by adding a runny fried egg. Wowza, was it ever good. I was originally planning to put this pic in my {What's for Dinner?} series, which could partially explain why half the sandwich is out of the picture. Partially.




A few days ago, I opened the last avocado in my Trader Joe's bag only to discover it was bruised. Normally this is a big let down, but I had been hankering to try some avocado chocolate pudding (you'll never guess where I found it. Did you guess? Yes, Pinterest, of course!), so I decided to sacrifice this avocado for the experiment. I say "sacrifice" because I was highly skeptical about this pudding recipe. I bet you're sitting there right now at your computer, being skeptical. That's okay, I feel you. Hear me out.

When it comes to chocolate pudding, I am a traditionalist. By that I mean I stick to the Jello boxed stuff. Yeah, I know about Alton Brown's homemade pudding mix. I also know about how much better for me real food is than the processed stuff. Meh. I'm a rice pudding girl anyway. But on the very rare occasion I make chocolate pudding, I'm particular about it being Jello brand. Perhaps it's a childhood memory thing? I especially love pudding skin, so I buy the kind you make over the stove instead of the instant kind. I snub my nose at you instant-pudding-people. What can I say? I'm an odd duck.

I'm kidding about the snubbing nose part. Anyway, apart from having a bruised avocado, I'm not sure I ever would have tried this recipe. But now. Ohhhhhhhhh now. I am a changed woman, and there is no going back. I may never eat a savory avocado again. Just wait, you skeptic, you. You'll see what I mean. Let's just say I'm glad not to be on snack duty for church today because I bet I would have thought I could bring this healthy goodness, but I would have been wrong. It is MINE ALL MINE.


I modified the recipe in a few ways. Firstly, I think it's a misnomer to call this "pudding." This is Nutella, baby. Wait, am I going to be sued for saying that? Okay, never mind. I'll call it nutty chocolate spread instead...AND it's healthy to boot. Winning! The second way I tweaked it is to remove some of the sugar. I thought it would be too grainy, not to mention too sweet when competing with super-sweet honey, so I dropped it down some. You can always add more sugar if you taste and determine yours needs it. The third twist is I use almond butter. I'm sure peanut butter is fine too, but I'm an almond butter convert. It's lighter and more textured without being crunchy, and it's almost sweet. Finally, I am adding a component to the technique: refrigeration. Sure, it was good at room temp too, but after refrigerating overnight, it reached full-on Nutella nutty chocolate spread texture.



p.s. the cashews were for snacking, not the recipe.
NUTTY CHOCOLATE SPREAD
serves: ME

1 ripe avocado (bruised is not a requirement)
1/4 cup almond butter
2 Tbs. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 Tbs. coconut oil, melted
3 Tbs. sugar
1/4 cup honey
1/2 tsp. vanilla
dash of salt




Combine all ingredients in a big bowl and beat until smooth with an electric hand mixer. You can see I didn't worry about smoothing out all the avocado flecks. If you care, just keep beating it more. Then grab a spoon for tasting...and a fork for fending off other would-be tasters. Refrigerate overnight for supreme spreading status.


My kids kinda like it.



How do you eat your Nutella nutty chocolate spread? If I have my druthers, I prefer it on a banana. Or straight up, spoon-style. Yesterday I put it on a Lundberg brown rice cake and dunked it in my tea. I know, weird. That's me!



I've got more to say about this book (The Urban Farm Handbook) tomorrow. Short version: It's fantastic!



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Update: A few words about coconut oil. I held out for a long time because of its high cost, but now that I have taken the plunge, I am sold! Coconut oil has hit a tipping point lately, so there are more articles touting the wonderful ways to use this oil than I can shake a stick at. A few of my favorites are over at Family Sponge and Food Renegade. Yes, the oil has saturated fat, but you've likely learned by now it's trans fat that should be avoided (at least, that's what they are saying this week). Personally, I sought it out as a replacement for what I've come to know as industrial oil (i.e. canola, vegetable). I think it's necessary for this recipe because it adds a depth of flavor and because it is solid at room temperature, assisting the bind of the spread. 

I also originally forgot to mention one of the reasons I love having an alternative to store-bought Nutella, which is that the product is largely composed of palm oil. If you haven't heard much about that ingredient yet, Borneo (among other places) is rapidly being deforested to collect it. Bad stuff, it is. 

Update #2 (4-16-12): Since I posted this recipe, I have not gone without nutty chocolate spread in my fridge. I make a double batch that lasts a week, give or take how long until we've engulfed the last drop, in the fridge. 

Editor's note: This post is a part of Fresh Bites FridayFreaky FridayFrugal FridayYour Green ResourceSimple Lives Thursday, It's a Keeper ThursdayFrugal Days, Sustainable WaysSlightly Indulgent TuesdayMonday Maniathe Homestead Barn HopSeasonal Celebration Sunday, and Sunday School.

15 comments:

Alice said...

This is right up my alley. I used to hate avocado and then came to love them in college. Now I do pretty much anything I can with them. Do you taste the avocado here or is it just for the health benefit- it seems like the chocolate and nuts would overpower the mild avocado flavor?

The Lone Home Ranger said...

Good question! You do not taste the avocado; at least, I can't really taste it. So it's more to bind it and give it the light, spreadable consistency.

Anonymous said...

How long does it last in the fridge?

lola said...

i'm intrigued... avocado nutella you say! will try it this week!

Kristin @ Intrepid Murmurings said...

Oh my. Found this via pinterest and I am so trying it! My husband and daughter can't do dairy so regular Nutella is out anyway. Yum!

The Lone Home Ranger said...

Hi Kristin, glad you found me. Welcome! Please let me know how it turns out.

Queen of Savings said...

Stopping by from the Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways Wednesday Blog Hop! http://queenofsavings.com

Pumpkin, Pie, Painter said...

Oh, this looks FANTASTIC!!! I just posted it on my blog page on fb and on pinterest (hope that's okay) and will be making this within the next 24 hours!! :) Thanks for sharing!!!

Rebecca said...

What a great idea-am going to have to try this!

Ann said...

Wow - what I great idea - I have to try this! I love avocados but my kids are so picky. They love chocolate - hah, ha!!!

The Lone Home Ranger said...

They won't even notice the avocado. My kids love almond butter, but if yours don't, you might try peanut butter instead.

The Lone Home Ranger said...

Share away! I'm all about the Pinterest love. Let me know how it turns out.

quickeasycheaphealthy said...

Yummy; this looks delicious!

Leah said...

I'm late to the party from a very round-about way... saw an article on TheKitchn about how to tell if an avo is just right or "bad," which linked to a story from NW Edible and your link was in the comments. Anyway, PUDDING SKIN! My husband just doesn't get it, but everyone in my family *loves* it. Since you're obviously a lady of great taste, I'm pinning this to try later!

herebythewater.wordpress.com said...

This looks amazing! I never buy nutella b/c of the additives, but it always sounds SO good. I can't wait to try this!

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