Hazelnuts, also known as filberts, are small, usually spherical nuts with a slightly sweet flavor. They are generally toasted to enable removing their papery skins.
To toast and skin hazelnuts:
Spread the hazelnuts on a baking sheet and place in a preheated 325 degree oven. Toast, shaking the sheet occasionally, until nuts begin to change color and are fragrant, 5-10 minutes. Remove from the oven. Rub the warm nuts in a kitchen towel to remove the thin, papery skins.
To chop hazelnuts:
Spread the hazelnuts on a work surface and, using a chef's knife, chop with a rocking motion. Or, chop the nuts in a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Do not overprocess or the nuts will turn into a paste.
To grind hazelnuts:
Use a countertop nut mill, the best tool for grinding nuts evenly. Or, grind the nuts with a mortar and pestle. You can also use a food processor fitted with the metal blade; do not overprocess or the nuts will turn into a paste. For other nut varieties, see almonds, Brazil nuts, candlenuts, cashews, chestnuts, macadamia nuts, peanuts, pecans, pine nuts, pistachios, and walnuts.