Nutella may be native to Italy and a staple at French cafés where it’s generously slathered atop crepes and croissants aplenty, but one chef has found a way to put a Southern spin on the cult-favorite condiment. “Pecans are the only tree nut native to the U.S.,” says Mat Urban, the executive chef at CBD Provisions in Dallas. “It’s also the state nut of Texas. To celebrate the food and culture of Texas, it was an easy decision to swap hazelnuts with pecans to create a version of Nutella that is truly Texan.” At the risk of blowing up his DMs, Urban says his version may even be superior to the original. “Pecans have a meatier taste to them with the higher oil content, which results in a nuttier flavor than traditional Nutella,” he says. Urban serves the pecan-packed spread with sourdough French toast, and pipes it into warm, freshly fried doughnuts. And you can never go wrong with a peanut butter, banana, and “Nutella” sandwich.
Nutella’s Delicious Southern Cousin (and How to Make It)
A Texas chef subs pecans for hazelnuts to create a Southern spin on the nutty, chocolatey spread
Photo: Jenny Everett
2 cups fresh pecans
12 oz. dark chocolate
1 tsp. cocoa powder
Salt, to taste
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread pecans on a baking sheet. Toast for 10 to 15 minutes, shaking the pan every few minutes, until nuts are lightly browned and smell toasty. Cool, and then transfer to a high-powered food processor. Run the food processor for several minutes until the pecans are a very smooth butter-like consistency. Melt dark chocolate over a double boiler, then stir in cocoa powder and a pinch of salt. With the food processor’s motor running, slowly drizzle the chocolate into the pecan butter. Continue whirling until smooth and well-combined.