I love Nutella. I learned about the jar that is hazelnut and chocolaty goodness when I lived in Spain after college. Up until now, though, I've only used it to spread on bread like peanut butter (which is absolutely amazing, by the way), but when Paula at Bell'Alimento asked if I'd like to join in her Nutella challenge, I jumped at the chance to improve my Nutella repertoire.
One thing I missed while living in Europe was my ice cream maker. I decided that it's debut would be something to do with the Nutella challenge, and I will definitely be making this again. I knew the base would be the pure creaminess of a sweet cream ice cream with a ribbon of Nutella, but I wanted something more. That something came in the form of chopped hazelnuts (the only type of hazelnut I could find in the local Kroger). Thus, my Nutella and Hazelnut Praline Ice Cream was born. My taste testers were torn--either add more Nutella or leave it as is. My vote was to leave it as is, but you can add as much or as little Nutella as you'd like.
Nutella and Hazelnut Praline Ice Cream
Ice Cream Recipe from Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream and Dessert Book
1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups heavy cream
2/3 cups half and half
3/4 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2-3 heaping Tablespoons Nutella
Toast the hazelnuts lightly. While they are toasting, lightly oil a baking sheet. Place the sugar in a dry saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring with a fork until melted. Swirl the pan (without stirring) until the sugar is a lovely golden brown. Add the hazelnuts and stir until completely coated. Spread on the baking sheet and let cool. Once cool, break into pieces and let cool even more in the refrigerator.
Whisk the cream, half and half sugar and vanilla in a bowl until the sugar dissolves. Pour the mixture into your ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer's directions to make your ice cream. About 2 minutes before the ice cream is done, add the praline pieces. When those are fully incorporated, stop the ice cream maker, and with a small spatula or spoon, carefully swirl the Nutella in one tablespoon at a time. (Don't over stir--just stir enough to create swirls in the ice cream.)
Transfer to a freezer-proof container with lid and freeze for at least an hour, but up to a day. (This ice cream recipe is best eaten within a day.)