Recently on a trip to London, I visited the holy grail of Italian delicatessens - Lina Stores. If you haven’t been and you love Italian cooking, then add it to your list, you won’t regret it!
A little treat that I buy myself when I am there are the small Italian chocolates called Baci, translated as “kisses” in Italian. They are nutty, chocolatey and very moreish and being that they are not easy to come by often, I thought I might have a go at making them.
There is no baking in this recipe, which may or may not appeal to you - it does however speed things up if you don’t have much time.
Italian Kisses - Baci
100g hazelnuts, roasted
20 whole hazelnuts, roasted
250g Nutella chocolate spread
35g Green & Blacks cocoa powder
200g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
Line a baking tray with baking parchment.
Finely chop the hazelnuts into small nibs, leaving the 20 whole ones to one side for later.
In a large bowl, mix together the Nutella, cocoa powder and chopped hazelnuts together until mixed into a thick paste.
Roll small amounts of the mixture (about 18g) into a ball shape and place onto the baking parchment, you will get about 20 baci. Top each ball with a whole roasted hazelnut and lightly press it down into the top.
Chill the baci in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring a saucepan of water to a gentle simmer with a heatproof bowl suspended over it. Tip the roughly chopped dark chocolate into the heatproof bowl and slowly melt. Once melted, remove from the heat and leave to one side until the chilled baci come out of the fridge.
Then place one baci at a time into the melted chocolate, until completely covered and then place back onto the baking parchment. Repeat until all the baci have been covered.
Place the baci back into the fridge until the chocolate has set.
Store in an airtight container for up to a week.
These make a lovely gift, Valentines day or not! These are dangerously delicious and am thrilled that I have found a way to bridge the gap until my next Italian deli discovery.