1 cup (200 g) sugar
1/2 cup (120 ml) water
4 cups (540 g) raw hazelnuts
1/2 cup (43 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons (30 ml) light olive oil
1/8 teaspoon salt
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).
2. Place hazelnuts in a single layer on a baking sheet. Toast in the oven until the skins are almost black and the meat is dark brown, about 15 minutes. Stir the nuts halfway through baking to ensure an even color.
3. To remove skins, wrap cooled hazelnuts in a clean kitchen towel. Rub until most of the skins come off.
4. Line a baking sheet with foil.
5. Combine sugar and water in a 3 to 4 cup (720-960 ml) saucepan. Cover and bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Remove the lid and wipe down the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush or a scrunched-up paper towel dipped in water. Cover and cook for 2 minutes or until the sugar is completely dissolved. Uncover and cook until the syrup looks like pale amber maple syrup.
6. Immediately pour the caramel onto the lined baking sheet. Tilt the sheet to spread the caramel as thinly as possible. Let harden completely, about 15 minutes.
7. Break cooled caramel into small pieces and place into the Vitamix container and secure lid.
8. Select Variable 1.
9. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 5.
10. Blend for 15 seconds. Stop machine and remove lid.
11. Add the nuts to the Vitamix container and secure lid.
12. Select Variable 1.
13. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 10, then to High.
14. Blend for 1 minute, using the tamper to press the ingredients into the blades. Stop machine and remove lid to scrape down the sides. Continue blending until nuts are free flowing.
15. Add remaining ingredients to the Vitamix container and secure lid.
16. Select Variable 1.
17. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 10, then to High.
18. Blend for 2 minutes using the tamper to press the ingredients into the blades.
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