Makes 2 cups:
1 cup hazelnuts
12 ounces high quality milk chocolate
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons confectioner's sugar
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C).
Spread the hazelnuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast them in the oven for about 10 minutes.
You may also toast them in a skillet over medium heat, turning them often so that they do not burn. This will take about 8 minutes until they are slightly browned and their skins begin to blister.
Wrap them in a kitchen towel and rub vigorously to remove as much loose skin as possible. (there will still be some skin left on the hazelnuts. It is ok.) Let cool completely.
Place the hazelnuts with a pinch of salt in a food processor and grind them until they form a paste and become shiny. The oil will begin to separate. This will take a few minutes so keep going until they are properly ground. This will ensure that you end up with a very smooth spread. The mixture will also begin to heat up. This is perfect to melt the chocolate that will be added next.
Add all of the remaining ingredients and blend well until completely smooth.
The hazelnut spread will be runny and warm, but it will continue to thicken as it cools. My favorite time to eat it is a day later.
Store this decadent treat in a jar at room temperature for two weeks. I don't know of any case where it's lasted that long....