• Prep Time:
  • Cooking Time:
  • Serves: 12 Servings

Hazelnut Success

  • Recipe Submitted by on

Category: Desserts

 Ingredients List

  • Karen Mintzias
  • 5 oz Hazelnuts
  • - lightly toasted & skinned
  • 1 c Confectioners' sugar
  • 6 Egg whites; room temperature
  • 1 pn Cream of tartar
  • 1 c Granulated sugar


3/4 c Granulated sugar
1/2 c -Water
5 Egg yolks
1 Egg; (whole)
3/4 lb Unsalted butter
- softened & lightly beaten
1 2/3 c Hazelnut Praline; (below)

5 oz Hazelnuts
- lightly toasted & skinned
1 1/4 c Granulated sugar
1/2 c -Water

Preheat the oven to 250 F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper
and trace a 10-inch circle onto each piece of parchment. Finely grate the
toasted hazelnuts (a rotary nut grater works best) into a bowl. Sift in 3/4
cup of the confectioners' sugar and toss to mix thoroughly.

In a large bowl, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar on low speed until
foamy, about 2 minutes. Increase the speed to high and beat until the
whites nearly double in volume and stiff peaks form. Gradually beat in the
granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat until the whites are dense
and glossy and form stiff peaks. With a large rubber spatula, lightly fold
in the nut mixture until no white streaks remain.

Use a tiny amount of the nut meringue to anchor the corners of the
parchment to the baking sheet. Spoon half of the meringue onto one of the
circles and, with a thin metal spatula, spread into an even layer to fill
the circle. Form a second circle with the remaining meringue on the other
baking sheet.

Bake the nut mixture in the upper and lower thirds of the oven, switching
positions once, until lightly browned and crisp throughout when tapped, 1
to 1-1/2 hours. The amount of time it takes to dry out will depend on the
humidity of the day. Let cool to room temperature. (The recipe can be
prepared to this point up to 2 days ahead.) Wrap the meringue layers, with
the parchment still attached to the bottom (for stability), in a large
sheet of foil to seal.

TO ASSEMBLE THE DESSERT: Peel off the parchment paper from the meringue
layers. Set one layer on a flat surface and spread evenly with 2 cups of
the (room temperature) Hazelnut Praline Buttercream. Place the second
layer, flat-side up, on top of the buttercream and press gently. With a
metal spatula, spread the remaining buttercream evenly on the top and sides
of the cake.

To decorate, press the Hazelnut Praline around the sides of the cake and
sift the remaining 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar evenly over the top or use
stencils to create a design. Garnish with the whole hazelnuts. Refrigerate
uncovered for at least 1 hour, or up to 24 hours to firm up. Serve chilled.

HAZELNUT PRALINE BUTTERCREAM: In a small heavy saucepan, combine the sugar
with the water. Bring to a boil over moderately high heat, stirring to
dissolve the sugar. Boil without stirring until the syrup reaches the
soft-ball stage, 244 degrees F on a candy thermometer, about 6 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, beat the egg yolks and whole egg on high speed until
pale, fluffy and quadrupled in volume, about 5 minutes.

Gradually beat the boiling syrup into the eggs in a thin steady stream.
Beat until the mixture cools to room temperature, 6 to 8 minutes.

Gradually beat in the butter, 4 tablespoons at a time, and continue to beat
until the buttercream is fluffy.

Fold in the Hazelnut Praline. Use at once or cover and refrigerate
overnight. Remove from the refrigerator at least 1 hour before using, to
return to room temperature. (Makes about 3-2/3 cups)

HAZELNUT PRALINE: Lightly oil a baking sheet and place the nuts in a
single-layer in the middle of the tray.

In a heavy saucepan, combine the sugar with the water. Bring to a boil
over moderately high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Boil without
stirring until the sugar turns golden, about 10 minutes.

Drizzle the boiling caramel over the nuts and set aside until hard and
cool, about 20 minutes.

Break the nuts and caramel into chunks by hitting the bottom of the tray.
Grind to a powder in a food processor, about 20 seconds. Use at once or
store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks. (Makes about 2-1/4 cups)

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