“Everyone is mad about nuts!” Richard starts his discussion of the hazelnut chocolate, I said he might want to rephrase that one. “They’re very popular. One of the most requested flavours. Chocolate and nuts go so well together.” However, he tells me that it’s in fact very hard to get right. The nut oils can make a truffle very gritty. 

He started off grinding caramelised hazelnuts and incorporating them into the cream. But this just didn’t give enough nut flavour, it was just a smooth truffle. “I tried loads of things! Extra nuts, whole nut in the middle…. but I liked a smooth truffle, so I decided to barrel roll the truffle in hazelnuts – this way it stays crunchy on the outside but has that luxurious truffle inside.” 

He also used to make almond truffles back in the day but these days there are far too many people allergic to use those. “I used to do a pistachio one too!”, he smiles as he reminisces, “but they were too salty for most peoples taste so hazelnut was a good all-rounder, the people pleaser.” 

This is a pretty old creation of Richards, back in 1999. He says it was slow to start with lots of trial and error but he ended up going for quality over quantity as the range developed, dropping almond and pistachio years ago to focus on the hazelnut.

This story was first published on our Facebook page in 2018 as part of our ‘The 12 Days of Chocolate’ flavour story series. But I think the story of flavour creation is interesting to read all year round – so they are finding a second home on our new blog and website!

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