I’ve been meaning to make hazelnut syrup for over three months now. As usual, I read about it in a book – the protagonists were constantly drinking and mentioning hazelnut coffee. Although I like my coffee black and pure, and I certainly can’t abide coffee shop syrups because in my experience they’re sickeningly sweet, I thought I might give making hazelnut syrup a try.
In November last year I was about to make the syrup when I decided on a change of plan and made chai syrup instead. So the hazelnuts went back into the cupboard. Today, though, I finally felt ready to give it a go. You can find the recipe here, I’m not going to post it but I’ll give you my comments on the process.
I’m sometimes prone to do things half-assed, and this was one such time. Turned out doing it this way gave me a bonus, though, so it was okay.
I had completely ignored that the recipe stated blanched hazelnuts. Of course I’d bought them with skin on. Thinking I’d just heat them in water and then pop them out of their skin like you do with almonds, I soon realised this was so not going to happen. It would have taken me waaaay to long to skin the hazelnuts, so after boiling them I dried them and proceeded to roast them in the oven, as the recipe said to do.
The next thing that didn’t work was smashing the hazelnuts into pieces. I tried to clobber them but no go. I then just added them to the boiling water, sugar and honey, and while they cooked most of them fell apart into two halves. That there was my bonus, because I decided I’d make a hazelnut & marzipan cake using both the syrup and the nuts, which would normally be discarded. The hazelnuts looked and tasted just too good, covered in syrup, to throw out.
So I got two great things out of this process: yummy syrup and a cake. Cake recipe to follow – watch this space!