Monday, 21 November 2011

Hotel Chocolat - Recipe and Giveaway.


Christmas is just around the corner and I was delighted when Hotel Chocolat approached me and asked if I wanted to do a review of their decadently delicious Christmas collection and also host my first ever giveaway! I adore Hotel Chocolat so without hesitation I accepted.

I have never done an official product review on this blog before but I was keen to do a little more than just talk about how amazing the product is (which in case you are wondering; it is).
As I perused the Hotel Chocolat Christmas Collection I soon clapped eyes on the Milk Chocolate Cinnamon Almonds, as soon as I saw the name of the product I was sold. I could almost taste them on my tongue and I immediately started thinking of recipe ideas incorporating these quintessential Christmas flavours.

When I was little we always got a selection of nuts in their shells at Christmas, it was tradition. Inevitably there was always loads left after Christmas as no one could be bothered fighting with the nutcracker or cracking a tooth when accidentally biting into a bit of shell. These chocolate covered cinnamon roasted nuts would be the perfect update on the tradition for me. (Although they wouldn't last long in my house)...



I have been wanting to try and make biscotti for a while now, ever since seeing Yasmin Limbert's chocolate pistachio variety on the Great British Bake Off. And these little Christmas delights seemed like the perfect addition to make a nice Christmas biscotti.

So as soon as my Hotel Chocolat parcel arrived I headed for the kitchen to bake up a storm. OK, well maybe I sat on the sofa and ate a handful first, you know, quality control and all that!


Chocolate & Cinnamon Almond Biscotti

  • 90G Plain Flour
  • half a tsp Baking Powder
  • 55g Sugar
  • 60g Hotel Chocolat Almonds roughly chopped.
  • 1 whole Egg
  • half a tsp almond flavouring

    The method I used slightly differs from Yasmin's, my first attempt to make them went horribly wrong, it was all the BBC's fault as they changed her recipe on their website so no matter how hard I tried it just wouldn't form a dough!
    Thanks to the Lovely Urvashi on twitter I managed to salvage it and get some pretty delicious results.

    I started by roughly chopping the Almonds. (As soon as I started chopping the most amazing smell filled my kitchen)


    I then combined the sugar, egg and almond flavouring and whisking using an electric whisk until the mixture was light and well combined.

    I then added the flour, baking powder and chopped nuts and formed a sticky looking dough. With well floured hands I then plonked the dough onto a lined baking tray and smooshed it into a long log shape.


    I baked at 180 for around 25 minutes, until lightly browned.


    (I took mine out after 20 minutes, but it probably could of done with that extra 5 minutes)

    I then allowed it to cool completely (this is important as it is much easier to cut when cool) and cut horizontally to make the traditional biscotti shape.


    They then baked again for 7 minutes, then were flipped over and baked for another 7 minutes.


  • It may seem faffy in places but it is honestly incredibly easy and they make fantastic edible homemade Christmas gifts, just pop them in a cellophane bag and tie with a nice Christmassy ribbon!


    The Hotel Chocolat Milk Chocolate Cinnamon Almonds really are incredibly versatile, on their own they are like little pieces of pure christmas. The chocolate is of course the usual high quality you'd expect from Hotel Chocolat, The cinnamon isn't too overpowering but a nice subtle hint and the almond has a great roasted flavour and good crunch.
    I will definitely be buying these again, they are £10 for 250g and they come in a really nice tin which I am now re-using to keep tea bags in at work!

    Now for the part you have all been waiting for: Hotel Chocolat are offering a 250g tin of chocolate cinnamon almonds worth £10 for one very lucky reader.

    Here’s how you can enter:
    1. Visit the Hotel Chocolat Christmas Page and leave a comment below telling me which product you would like to find under the tree on Christmas Day.

    2. For an extra entry Follow Nelly's Cupcakes on Facebook and leave another seperate comment letting me know. (if you already follow me then leave a comment telling me)

    3. For an extra cheeky entry Follow Nellyscupcakes on Twitter and you know the score, leave a comment letting me know (include your twitter name).

    5. Aaaand, there’s one more…Tweet the following “I have entered @nellyscupcakes’s giveaway to win something delicious from @HotelChocolat http://bit.ly/sABVb5 ” and once again, comment here that you have (including your twitter name)

    The very best of luck! The winner will be drawn randomly on Tuesday 29th November.4

    Update: Sorry, competition is now closed!

    112 comments:

    1. I've done everything you've asked - now where do I collect them from! :-)x

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    2. Actually, I don't think I can wait that long, I think I may have to order some now xx

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    3. Laura Laird @biglors21 November 2011 16:46

      Looooooove hotel Chocolat, so I'd want anything and everything under the tree!! But think one of tge advent calendars or a Dasher the reindeer for Bubba (my wee man Archie) to enjoy would be fab!!

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    4. Laura Laird @biglors21 November 2011 16:47

      Now stalking...*cough* sorry...following you on Facebook!! (Laura Laird)

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    5. Laura Laird @biglors21 November 2011 16:48

      Also following you on twitter @biglors :-D

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    6. Laura Laird @biglors21 November 2011 17:11

      And have tweeted the comp tag line too!! @biglors

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    7. I love the Tiddly Milk Reindeers :)

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    8. I'm following Nelly's cup cakes on facebook as sarah morris x

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    9. I am following nelly's cup cakes on twitter @sarah34090 x

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    10. and I have tweeted about the competition :-D

      thanks for this fab giveaway x

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    11. Thank you for this lovely giveaway my dear very generous of you!

      Chocolate wise I'd like to find under the tree a big box of Hotel Chocolat's dark Christmas selection, om nom nom

      Realistically, I am likely to find my 3 legged cat Percy eating the ribbon off our gifts, haha!

      Have tweeted and liked your Facebook page with same comment and already following you on twitter :-)

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    12. I love cinnamon, almonds, and chocolate!! Combined sounds heavenly!

      Too hard to choose just one thing on their site but I want to try the Winter Desserts!

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    13. I like your facebook page now!

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    14. I already follow on twitter! @mikesbaking

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    15. I tweeted about the competition! :) @mikesbaking

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    16. Everytime I look on hotel chocolat I want something different! Today I'm feeling the Christmas Bliss gift bag.
      Ps Love your biscotti and your inventive use of the product!

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    17. just tweeted from @bakingaddict

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    18. I love Hotel Chocolat. There store in Chester is so lovely.

      I think the winter desserts so yummy!

      Ok I have liked your facebook book page, twitted and follow you!
      xstary_eyesx

      I determined to win!

      Amy D
      www.bonjourcupcakes.blogspot.com
      xx

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    19. Trying to enter but the link for the Hotel chocolat christmas page isn't working?

      Great giveaway - chocolate cinnamon almonds sound amazing!

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    20. Hi Nelly!

      I would very much like to see the Turkish Delight (http://www.hotelchocolat.co.uk/turkish-delight-P330027/) under my tree, I do love chocolate, but I especially love turkish delight.

      I follow you on twitter and facebook and I have tweeted the phrase!

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    21. Hi Nelly (I'm about to do this 4 times)
      I would very much like the alternative mince pies under my Christmas tree
      :-)
      Merry Pre-Christmas
      CJ

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    22. Howdy!

      Great competition, Me & Mr P would love a Christmas Goody Bag... hohoho ;0)

      PS I have tweeted too...

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    23. whoops re last comment I forgot to add my twitter name!

      I would love a Christmas Goody Bag @mrspkitchen

      ;0)

      ReplyDelete
    24. Damn blogger posting before I was finished.
      I adore those wee caramel penguins. How cute are they?

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    25. The Tiddly Caramel Chocolate Penguins look tasty! ;0)

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    26. Like Nelly's Cupcakes on facebook as spike hutton

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    27. Following NellysCupcakes on twitter @glennhutton

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    28. Tweeted message as @glennhutton ;0)

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    29. I'd love to try the pink champagne truffles! Oh they all look so yummy and the chocolate cinnamon almonds would be a perfect Christmas treat! Following as Shelle F

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    30. i like the look of the alternative mince pies

      @ashlallan

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    31. i have tweeted as @ashlallan

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    32. i am following you on twitter as @ashlallan

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    33. I would love the Hotel Chocolat Ultimate Christmas Hamper
      http://www.hotelchocolat.co.uk/luxury-christmas-hamper-P356527/

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    34. Following on Facebook

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    35. Following on Twitter @Liquorice13

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    36. Tweeted @Liquorice13

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    37. I would love to find some tiddly caramel chocolate penguins under my tree! Sweet and delicious!

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    38. I Like you on facebook - Natalie Holland x

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    39. I follow you on twitter @fluffyblueberry

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    40. I tweeted your giveaway! - @fluffyblueberry

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    41. Fab recipe :)

      I would like to find the alternative mince pies, they look & sound really really tasty!

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    42. I'm following you on twitter
      @josie301
      x

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    43. I've also tweeted about the giveaway
      @josie301

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    44. mmmmm choccy!

      I would be more than happy with some Hotel Chocolart under my tree!

      following both sites on facebook under same name of Anthony Harrinton

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    45. I love the little reindeers!
      @angiesandhu

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    46. Following Nelly's Cupcakes on Facebook

      @angiesandhu

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    47. Follow Nelly's Cupcakes on twitter

      @angiesandhu

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    48. Have tweeted the competition entry

      @angiesandhu

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    49. PS i will have to try the Biscotti at the weekend!

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    50. the Tiddly Caramel Chocolate Penguins look fantastic

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    51. Tiddly caramel penguins - sooooo cute!

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    52. I have liked you on Facebook :-)

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    53. I have followed you on Twitter
      @slbhill42

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    54. I have tweeted about the competition :-)
      @slbhill42

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    55. Wowww!! I think the Caramel Chocolate Penguins look absolutely amazing! xx

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    56. I would love to win the class Christmas selection, they look gorgeous.

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    57. I like the look of the Chilli Penguins

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    58. Following on Twitter as @debwh142

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    59. jillwebb@blueyonder.co.uk24 November 2011 21:23

      Triple Chocolate Wham Bam Giant Slab
      woldnt mind this under the tree

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    60. Am following on facebook

      Gary
      gsh@barraccount.co.uk

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    61. tweeted! @bakingelements

      Sadia

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    62. I'd love to find the alternative mince pies under the tree, they look yummy.

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    63. I'm Following on Facebook.

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    64. I'm following on twitter @EmmaHolness

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    65. I fancy the Sleekstar Christmas Collection from Hotel Chocolat! Lots of intense flavours...yum

      lollyp333@googlemail.com

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    66. I'm also following Nellys Cupcakes on facebook - yummy!

      lollyp333@googlemail.com

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    67. I'd love to find one of the dipping chocolate sets under my tree! I could share it with my family as we watch a good Christmas film! :)

      Great giveaway. :) x

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    68. I love the christmas cracjers x

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    69. Like on facebook x

      Lindsey Mse Jones

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    70. Following on twitter @linziwoopp

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    71. Thanks for the giveaway
      I would love to find The Happy Family Christmas Hamper
      @chocolateonemse

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    72. I have liked you on FB
      Karen A Barrett

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    73. I am following you on twitter
      @chocolateonemse

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    74. I have tweeted
      @chocolateonemse

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    75. I would love to find Hotel Chocolat's Alternative Mince Pies under my Christmas tree, they look amazing.

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    76. I have liked you on facebook (Claire Trevor)

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    77. I am following you on twitter as @claire_trevor

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    78. I have tweeted as @claire_trevor

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    79. I'd like to find the Tiddly Milk Reindeers under my tree :)

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    80. following on twitter @joanna_kow

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    81. Kathleen Connolly28 November 2011 19:34

      I would love to find the Caramel & Co under my tree: http://www.hotelchocolat.co.uk/cid/7OOCJFZ3DJR8FRIDGYW0TWR46HJTWQHH/caramel-and-chocolate-P1663/

      Twitter: @MISBUDMAN

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    82. Kathleen Connolly28 November 2011 19:36

      Liked you on Facebook.
      Kathleen Connolly

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    83. Kathleen Connolly28 November 2011 19:37

      Following you on Twitter. @MISBUDMAN

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    84. Kathleen Connolly28 November 2011 19:39

      Tweeted. @MISBUDMAN

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    85. Classic Christmas Luxe Selection would love to have

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    86. liked you on FB karen salt railton

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    87. Oooh the Nibbly Noel Slab looks scrummy http://www.hotelchocolat.co.uk/cid/7OO0D24VTAMMMDIBCOU5Y7WU172NJNMD/christmas-gifts-for-children-P310222/

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    88. Following your FB page (Katie Skeoch)

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    89. Following on twitter @Top_cat81

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    90. tweeted @Top_cat81 https://twitter.com/#!/Top_cat81/status/141277795211952128

      ReplyDelete
    91. I would like to find the Liquid Chocolat - Winter Drinking Chocolate under my tree

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    92. I am following on Facebook (Louise Thacker)

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    93. I am following you on Twitter @ElvinFairy

      ReplyDelete
    94. I have tweeted @ElvinFairy

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    95. I love the table crackers would love these on my table!

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    96. following you on facebook - angie hoggett

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    97. following you on twitter @angiehoggett

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    98. i've tweeted @angiehoggett

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    99. I'm now following you on FB. follower 70. I would love to fing the chilli penguins under my tree. Those cinnamon almonds sound delicious, may have to go and buy some.

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    All comments are greatly loved;

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