Originally posted by gap
I was wondering if anyone knew about commercial pure nut pastes (PNPs). Specifically, do they roast the nuts before they grind them? I’m thinking specifically of hazelnuts here.
Typically, yes, but this is not a requirement. It depends on the flavour you want. A roasted nut paste will taste much more of the roast – so that there are identifiable similarities between, for instance, hazelnut and almond nut paste, if the nuts are roasted.
By contrast unroasted nuts produce milder flavours, and sometimes that’s what you want. Again, pure unroasted almond paste is very mild and a good background for other subtle flavours that you don’t want overwhelmed by something too strong. Unroasted hazelnuts, btw, will complement fruits rather better than the roasted version which is better with spices, coffees, chocolate, etc.
However, simply putting your nuts through the grinders will probably not generate results comparable to commercial nut paste – at least not initially, and possibly never, if the type of mill isn’t set up to achieve that result. So experimentation will be in order here.