Blanching hazelnuts means removing the bitter skin and allowing for a smoother creamier taste in baking. It is possible to purchase already blanched nuts however it is simple to do yourself and also more affordable.
How to blanch HazelnutsDifficulty: Easy
This process involves scolding the hazelnuts in boiling water with bicarbonate of soda (which acts as a catalyst) before soaking in icy cold water to loosen the skins.
125g (1 cup) whole natural hazelnuts
3 tablespoons bicarbonate of soda
2 cups boiling water
2 cups cold water
1 cup Ice
- In a deep pan boil the water and slowly add the bicarbonate of soda.
- Add the hazelnuts to the water and boil for about 5 minutes.
- Remove the hazelnuts from the pan using a slotted spoon to drain any excess water and immediately put in a bowl of cold water with the ice.
- Using your fingers try and remove the skins. If the skins are still tough boil for an extra 2 minutes, otherwise let the hazelnuts soak for a few minutes.
- After soaking remove from the ice water and place the hazelnuts between two clean tea towels and rub together to easily remove the skins.
- Store cool and dry in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Chop, grind or toast and add to cakes and bakes.