12 oz. pizza dough, cut and rolled into small balls (yields 12 dough balls)
3 tbsp. hazelnut spread
4 oz. fresh berries
1 oz. powdered sugar, for dusting
Roll the pizza dough into 1-oz. balls and bake at 550°F until golden and cooked through. (The balls should sound hollow when tapped.) Place the hazelnut spread in a bowl and pile the warm balls in the middle. Scatter fresh berries around the dough balls. Dust with powdered sugar and serve warm.
Heaven by the Spoonful
Hazelnut spread tastes like a spoonful of heaven, and, naturally, we’ve got the Italians to thank for it. The story goes that Pietro Ferrero, a pastry maker from Italy’s Piedmont region, developed the initial recipe for what would become hazelnut spread in 1946. At the time, World War II had crippled the cocoa supply in Europe, and chocolate was hard to come by. Hazelnuts, on the other hand, were inexpensive and plentiful. So Ferrero mashed hazelnuts, sugar and a small amount of cocoa into a paste. He then shaped it into a loaf, sliced it and served it on bread. “My grandfather lived to find this formula—he was completely obsessed by it,” Ferrero’s grandson, Giovanni Ferrero, told the BBC in 2014. “He woke up my grandmother at midnight—she was sleeping—and he made her taste it with spoons, asking, ‘How was it?’ and ‘What do you think?’”
Ferrero’s concoction proved so popular that the pastry chef founded a new business, the Ferrero Company, that same year, and developed a more spreadable version a few years later. But it was another Ferrero, Pietro’s son Michele, who developed the current version and gave it a memorable brand name that’s familiar to dessert lovers everywhere: Nutella.