Hazelnut chocolate Easter eggs

Note: this recipe involves making your own chocolate hazelnut filling. If that sounds too much like hard work (or you can’t source hazelnut butter), a good alternative filling is Countdown own brand chocolate hazelnut spread. It’s made with UTZ-certified cocoa :-)

No one seems to be selling fair trade Easter eggs in New Zealand this year, so last week my friend Anna and I again got together to make our own. We use fair trade chocolate: this way we can be confident our Easter treats are a blessing not only to those who receive them but also to all those involved in their production :-)

home made hazelnut Easter eggs

Over the years we’ve developed a number of home-made Easter egg recipes. We first learned how to make marshmallow chocolate Easter eggs. Last year we added creme eggs to our repertoire: both classic creme eggs and vegan peppermint chocolate ones. This year we made hazelnut chocolate Easter eggs: a milk chocolate shell filled with a paste that tastes a lot like the filling in Guylian seashell chocolates.

This recipe makes about 30 eggs using moulds with cavities about 3cm across, 4cm long and 1cm deep. Eggs cost 55c each (2017 prices in NZ dollars, hazelnut butter from Harvest Wholefoods, other ingredients from Countdown). It’s way less fiddly than the creme eggs we have previously made in the same moulds!

Ingredients

Method

Preparing the filling:

  1. Gently melt first measure milk chocolate in microwave (burns easily). Don’t worry if it’s a bit lumpy (i.e. a little burnt) - that won’t be noticeable in the final product.
  2. Mix in hazelnut butter, then icing sugar.

Assembling the Easter eggs (see below for photos of the process):

  1. Melt second measure chocolate.
  2. Paint melted chocolate into the mould cavities. Tap chocolate to remove any bubbles. Scrape to level. Put into the freezer for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Remove mould from freezer, coat the sides of each cavity with a second coat of chocolate (a piping bag helps with this) then scrape to level.
  4. Freeze 5 minutes (they should be set solid when the mould looks ‘misted’).
  5. Tap moulds to remove chocolate. If they don’t come easily, twist and rub them with your thumbs. It can take several goes of this (putting them in the freezer between times) till they’re all out.
  6. Place half the halves back in the moulds.
  7. Microwave the filling if necessary (be gentle, it becomes runny fast! - try 10-20 second bursts - just until it’s workable) then put an oval of filling into each mould such that it stands a bit ‘proud’ of the rim.
  8. Pipe chocolate around the rim of these half-eggs then top with another half, removing any chocolate smears that ooze well beyond the edge of the egg. Leave to stand in the moulds (so level) and return to freezer until set (1-2 minutes).

Photos of the process

I decided to melt the chocolate in my fancy chocolate machine so it wouldn’t burn. As you can see, that didn’t work out as hoped. However, using chocolate that was as lumpy as this turned out to work fine.

molten chocolate in heated bowl which is still lumpy

Hazelnut butter mixed in. You can see it’s got quite a few lumps from the chocolate.

lumpy mix of hazelnut butter and chocolate in metal bowl

Icing sugar mixed in. You can see it’s now stiff-ish (and not much above room temperature).

bowl of hazelnut filling

The recipe made about a cup of filling. I stored it in the fridge until I was ready to make the eggs. I expect it will store more-or-less indefinitely at fridge temperature.

glass jar with brown contents labelled hazelnut filling

Pouring the chocolate into the moulds for the first coat. I’m using these moulds.

plastic chocolate mould tray with two filled moulds and chocolate pouring from spoon into a third mould

Piping the second coat of chocolate around the rim of the egg shells (so that they are evenly thick all around)

piping bag being used to thicken rim of chocolate shells in the mould tray

Piping chocolate around the rim of the eggs after they’ve been filled with hazelnut filling. Some of these have already been ‘capped’ with a second half-egg.

tray of chocolate moulds with filling inside and additional layer of chocolate on top of the filling around the edge

Ready for final setting in the freezer.

mould tray with complete eggs in each mould

The finished product!

several hazelnut easter eggs