Hazelnuts are my favourite kind of nut. Right now they are available in abundance here in Germany as people like to consume nuts over the holidays. (We always used to get a bag full of nuts, clementines, and chocolates for Christmas). If it comes to food, hazelnuts are very versatile. They go well with chocolate but they are also nice in savoury things. These nuts add a lot of flavour even to such simple things as bread. The bakery next to my parent’s house sells a wonderful Früchtebrot (fruit bread) in which hazelnuts and dried figs make up most of the complex flavour. Even if you only add hazelnuts to your bread dough, you will still be surprised by the outstanding taste of the freshly baked loaf.
I have different versions of hazelnut bread. Once I used a sourdough starter and once I used mostly white flour. Here I am sharing a very , “weekday” version made with yeast and whole wheat flour.
Haselnussbrot (makes one large loaf)
500 g whole wheat flour
350 g luke warm water
10 g fresh (or 3.3 g instant) yeast
10 g salt
100 g hazelnuts (pecans or walnuts work well too)
finely cracked grains or corn meal for sprinkling the pan
Combine flour, water, yeast, and salt in a large bowl. Knead until the dough is smooth and has developed enough gluten (about 10 minutes). Cover the bowl and let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled. Add hazelnuts and knead until the nuts are incorporated. Shape your loaf, sprinkle your bread or the pan with finely cracked grains and let the dough double again. Preheat oven to 250°C (480°F) in time.
Score the bread, transfer it to the oven and bake for 35-45 minutes. Reduce heat to 200 °C (400°F) after 10 minutes.
Let the bread cool compleately before slicing. Enjoy!