Earlier this week I had the pleasure of speaking with lifestyle expert Brooke Peterson on holiday decorating and entertaining guests. Not only did she share some of her top decor looks anyone can recreate in their home, but stated something very important when entertaining this season, and that is “When you’re having 40 people over for dinner, it is not the time to try out a new recipe.” Such simple advice, but how many of us are guilty of waiting until the last minute, and taking on a task that seems simple enough, but brings even greater stress in the kitchen!
Certified Master Chef and vice president of culinary education for Le Cordon Bleu, Chef Edward Leonard has the perfect solution, he shared his decadent Chocolate Hazelnut Torte recipe, which you can recreate now and perfect by the holidays!
“This year, we’re seeing great new chocolate desserts that incorporate other flavors that make the perfect indulgent treat for the holidays,” said Chef Leonard.
Chocolate Hazelnut Torte
|½ cup peeled hazelnuts|
|¼ cup all-purpose flour|
|1 tablespoon quality cocoa|
|¼ teaspoon Kosher salt|
|4 large eggs, room temperature|
|6 ounces 72% cacao extra bittersweet chocolate baking chips|
|6 ounces cold unsalted butter, diced|
|2 tablespoons Nutella|
|½ cup granulated white sugar|
|1 teaspoon real vanilla extract|
|¼ teaspoon cream of tartar|
|¼ cup granulated white sugar|
- Toast nuts: Place hazelnuts in 300°F oven for 10–12 minutes. In food processor, pulse nuts, flour, cocoa and salt until finely ground.
- Heat oven to 375°F. Line the bottom of an 8 x 3-inch spring-form pan with parchment paper that has been rubbed with cold butter. Separate eggs. Melt chocolate, butter and Nutella in a stainless steel bowl over a small pan of low simmering water. Remove from heat; reserve.
- With electric mixer, beat egg yolks, ½ cup sugar and vanilla until pale and thick (about 4–5 minutes), creating a ribbon effect when you lift beater. With a rubber spatula, gently fold in the warm chocolate mixture. Then fold in the ground nut mixture; reserve.
- In a clean stainless steel bowl, with the whisk attachment, whisk egg whites at medium speed until foamy; add cream of tartar. Whisk just until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, beating at high speed, until meringue is fluffy and still moist.
- With a whisk, fold 1⁄3 of the whites into the chocolate batter. Quickly fold in the remaining whites. Do not overmix. Pour mixture into prepared pan and smooth the top.
- Bake 30 to 40 minutes. Check cake by placing a toothpick into the center of the cake; when done, moist crumbs will appear.
- Cool in pan on wire rack for about 15 minutes. It will slightly rise and fall a bit in the center. Remove from pan. Serve with chocolate sauce and soft whipped cream, if desired.