Carbs, chocolate AND sugar all wrapped up in a sugary cinnamony (that's totally a word) crust and twisted together with toasted hazelnuts? This, my foodie friends, is surely what heaven tastes like. And smells like, because the aromas that waft from your oven will certainly make you friends! This bread smelled so good, I fanned myself with the oven in the hopes that the spicy chocolatey-ness would cling to me and act as a delicious perfume. I wish I was kidding, but I'm not.
But back to the bread. It's super easy and versatile. If you want to swop out the Nutella (why on earth would you want to do that?!) then you could spread the dough with thick custard or stick to the simple cinnamon sugar. Go nuts with the nuts and use almonds, pecans, walnuts - whatever your heart desires. And don't be fooled by those intricate-looking twists - this bread is dead easy to make. Almost as easy as eating it!
Chocolate hazelnut twist
3 cups cake flour
1 tsp salt
¼ cup sugar
60g butter or margarine, softened
10 g instant yeast
1 large egg, beaten
½ cup lukewarm water
1 cup chocolate hazelnut spread (ie. Nutella)
3 tbsp sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
50g hazelnuts, skinned and toasted
1 cup icing sugar, sifted
30-45ml espresso or strong coffee
Preheat the oven to 180C. Combine the flour, salt and sugar then rub in the butter to form rough breadcrumb texture. Add the yeast and mix well. Add the beaten egg and just enough water to form a soft dough. Knead the dough by hand for 10 minutes or with an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl and cover with a damp cloth. Leave to rest for 10 minutes. Roll the dough out into a large rectangle about about 1/2cm thick. Spread a thin layer of chocolate spread over the dough and leave a 1cm border around the edges.Mix the sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle over the chocolate along with the toasted hazelnuts, pressing the nuts into the dough. Beginning at the longest side of the rectangle, roll the dough into a long cylinder. Cut the cylinder in half lengthwise down the middle and open it up to expose the layers. Twist the two pieces around each other to create a plait. Form into a ring on a lined baking sheet, folding the ends under each other. Bake in the preheated oven for about 1 hour or until golden brown and when tapped the bread makes a hollow sound. Mix the icing sugar and coffee together to form a smooth drizzling consistency then dribble the icing over the slightly cooled wreath and serve.
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