Mother’s Day Truffles

 

Quick Mother’s Day food thought. This year, instead of fighting the crowds for a mediocre buffet or making the same pancakes, waffles and burnt toast breakfast in bed is your present mistake, why not put a little extra effort (and chocolate) into the food portion of your present and makes truffles and/or fudge for your favorite mom. Ok, so you may need to add a little  bling bling to round out the specialness of the day but you’ll be surprised at how easy (and fun) it is for the family to create confectionary masterpieces for mom.

A truffle is an intensely rich ganache (a chocolate/cream mixture) covered with chocolate and fudge is, well, fudge You can use milk or bittersweet chocolate for either and both the truffles and fudge  can be combined with “extra ingredients” like cocoa powder, candied fruits,  coconut, or chopped nuts or what ever your mom likes best.

Most people assume that truffles are complicated and fudge is easy to make. They couldn’t be more wrong. Truffles and fudge are actually the perfect candies for kids to test their kitchen skills. Unlike a lot of commercially made chocolate candies, homemade chocolate truffles and fudge don’t necessarily require tempered chocolate (temperature controlled melted chocolate). In fact, you won’t need a candy thermometer at all for any of these recipes. All you need to create gourmet tasting candy is time and the best-quality chocolate you can find. I like Ghirardelli, Godiva, or Callebaut. Yes they are a little harder to find and cost a more than Hershey but the taste of the truffle (and mom) are worth the bigger bucks.

The Great White Chocolate Debate

Because it doesn’t contain any part of the cocoa bean except the fat, white chocolate is not actually chocolate! If you’re going to use white chocolate be sure to use one where the only fat in it is cocoa butter

Quick Tip

I form my truffles with a melon baler but you can use a small ice-cream scoop just roll the centers between the palms of your hands

Truffles are best when served at room temperature

 

CLASSIC CHOCOLATE TRUFFLES

11 ounces chocolate
2/3 cup heavy cream
 cocoa powder for dusting (or another top-quality cocoa)

Finely chop 8 ounces of the chocolate and put in a bowl. Bring heavy cream to a boil in a small heavy saucepan. Pour the cream over the chocolate, mashing any big pieces with a wooden spoon. Then stir with a whisk in concentric circles, starting in the center and working your way to the edge, until the ganache is smooth. (Don’t beat, or you’ll incorporate air.) Let the mixture stand at room temperature until thick enough to hold its shape, about 1 hour. Cover the bottom of a cookie sheet with parchment paper.  Using a melon baller scoop out balls of the chocolate mixture and place them on the prepared cookie sheet. If the mixture starts sticking to the melon baller dip it in the cocoa powder before scooping out the balls.  Freeze the chocolate balls until firm, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt 3 more ounces of the same chocolate and smear some your hand (you can use disposable plastic gloves if you prefer) gently rub a chilled truffle in the melted chocolate to coat lightly. Toss the truffles in unsweetened cocoa powder (a fork is the best tool for tossing truffles in cocoa). Shake truffles in a sieve to eliminate excess cocoa.  Repeat until all the filling is gone.  You can store truffles in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for 2 to 3 months. Makes about 60 truffles.

BITTERSWEET TRUFFLES

10 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1/4 cup rum
1/2 cup Dutch process cocoa powder

 finely chopped nuts, and/or toasted coconut, for coating truffles
8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine

Place the 10 ounces of chocolate and butter in a medium size glass mixing bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds. Remove and stir, and repeat this process 1 more time. Set aside. Heat the heavy cream and corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat until simmering. Remove from the heat and pour the mixture over the melted chocolate mixture; let stand for 2 minutes. Using a rubber spatula, stir gently, starting in the middle of bowl and working in concentric circles until all chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth and creamy. Gently stir in the rum. Pour the mixture into an 8 by 8-inch glass baking dish and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour. Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using a melon baller, scoop chocolate onto the prepared cookie sheet pan for 30 minutes.

Place the cocoa powder, nuts, and/or toasted coconut each in its own in pie pan and set aside. In the meantime melt the 8 ounces of chocolate and remove the truffle mixture from the refrigerator. Using a melon baller scoop out balls of the chocolate mixture and place them on the prepared cookie sheet. If the mixture starts sticking to the melon baller dip it in the cocoa powder before scooping out the balls. Shape into balls by rolling between the palms of your hands. Use powder-free vinyl or latex gloves if desired. Then place the truffle into the dish with either the cocoa powder, nuts or coconut. Move the truffle around to coat; leave truffle in the coating for 10 to 15 seconds before removing. In the meantime, continue placing the chocolate-coated truffles in the cocoa or other secondary coating. After 10 to 15 seconds, remove the truffle to a parchment lined sheet pan. Repeat until all truffles are coated. Allow to set in a cool dry place for at least 1 hour; or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Makes 50 to 60 truffles.

WHITE CHOCOLATE TRUFFLES

Because the flavors need time to mellow these truffles taste best if you make them at least 3 to 4 days before you want to serve them.

6 squares (6 oz.) white chocolate
8 oz. pecans, about 2 cups, ground
1 cup finely ground vanilla wafer crumbs
1/3 cup orange liqueur
finely grated peel of 1 orange
powdered sugar

Melt the white chocolate in microwave or in top of a double boiler. Stir the pecans into the melted white chocolate. Add 1 cup of the cookie crumbs, liqueur and peel. Mix well and let set until firm. Cover the bottom of a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using a melon baller scoop out balls of the chocolate mixture and place them on the prepared cookie sheet. Roll the balls in powdered sugar. Store, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for at least 1 week before serving, so flavors blend.  Truffles will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Makes 40 to 50 truffles.

CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER TRUFFLES

1 cup peanut butter chips
3/4 cup butter
1/2 cup cocoa
14 oz Can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 tablespoon vanilla

optional coatings:

chopped Nuts, milk chocolate, graham cracker crumbs, confectioner’s sugar

In heavy saucepan, over low heat, melt chips with the butter. Stir in the cocoa and mix until smooth. Add sweetened condensed milk and vanilla. Cook, stirring constantly until the mixture is thickened and blended, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat. Chill for at least 2 hrs. or until firm enough to handle. Cover the bottom of a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using a melon baller scoop out balls of the chocolate mixture and place them on the prepared cookie sheet.  Roll the balls in any of the above coatings. Chill until firm; about 1 hour. Store covered in the refrigerator. Makes 40 to 50 truffles

CHOCOLATE APRICOT TRUFFLES
12 ounces of bittersweet chocolate
7 ounces of apricot jam (the highest quality with the least sugar)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
enough bittersweet chocolate to use for covering the truffles (12 to 14 ounces)

In a bowl combine the cream, jam and vanilla. Whisk well to combine. Melt the 12 ounces of chocolate. Stir in the cream mixture and blend. Chill the mixture for an hour. Cover the bottom of a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using a melon baller scoop out balls of the chocolate mixture and place them on the prepared cookie sheet and chill for an hour. Melt the rest of the chocolate in a bowl, and dip each of the truffle centers and return to the waxed paper and chill until hard. Makes 40 to 50 truffles.

SNICKER FUDGE

This recipe for fudge is a tad more complicated that most but the end results is worth the extra time you need to make it.
Bottom Layer:
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1/4 cup butterscotch chips
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

Filling:
1/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups marshmallow cream
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups chopped salted peanuts

Caramel Layer:
14 oz pkg. caramels
1/4 cup whipping cream

Frosting:
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1/4 cup butterscotch chips
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

Bottom layer: Lightly grease a 9X13 pan. In a sauce pan combine the 1 cup milk chocolate chips, 1/4 cup butterscotch chips and 1/4 cup peanut butter. Over a low heat cook, stirring until melted and smooth. Spread the mixture onto the bottom of the prepared pan. Refrigerate until set.

For the middle layer: Melt the 1/4 cup butter in a heavy saucepan. Add the cup of sugar and 1 1/2 cup milk. Bring the mixture to a boil. Boil and stir constantly for 5 min. Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the marshmallow creme, peanut butter and vanilla. After the ingredients are combined add the peanuts. Mix to combine and spread the mixture over first layer. Refrigerate until set.

Top Layer: In a sauce pan combine the caramels and cream. Heat over a low heat, stirring until melted and smooth. Spread the mixture over the filling. Refrigerate until set.

Frosting:
In another saucepan, combine 1 cup chocolate chips and 1/4 cup peanut butter; Heat until melted and smooth. Pour the frosting over the caramel layer. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Cut into 1 inch squares. Store in the refrigerator

MICROWAVE FUDGE

Easy chocolate fudge made in the microwave oven.

3 2/3 cups confectioners’ sugar

1/2 cup cocoa

1/4 cup milk

1/2 cup butter

1 tablespoon vanilla

1/2 cup chopped pecans, optional
Grease an 8 in. pan and set it aside. In a bowl combine the confectioners’ sugar, cocoa, milk, and butter. Cook on high power until butter is melted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir until smooth. Blend in the vanilla and pecans. Spread the mixture into the prepared pan and refrigerate until firm. Cut fudge in 12 to 16 squares.

MARSHMALLOW FUDGE

4 1/2 cups sugar

2 tablespoons butter

 pinch of salt

10 to 12 ounce can evaporated milk

12 ounces semisweet chocolate

12 ounces German sweet chocolate

1 cup marshmallow cream

2 cups chopped nutmeats

In a sauce pan combine the sugar, butter, salt, and evaporated milk. Cook over a low heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 6 minutes then remove it from the heat. Put in the semi sweet chocolate, German chocolate, marshmallow cream, and nutmeats in a bowl. Pour the boiling syrup mixture over the chocolate in the bowl. Stir until the chocolate is all melted, then pour the mixture in a 9X13 pan. Let stand for a few hours before cutting into 24 squares

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide
    May 03, 2011 @ 18:19:29

    Oh, my mom loves apricot. She lives a few states away, so I’ll just have to think warm thoughts of her when I make them.

    Reply

  2. Guess Who?
    May 03, 2011 @ 20:24:19

    Yum. I hear my hips expanding already. And worth every extra inch.

    Reply

  3. shamtest
    May 14, 2011 @ 05:42:42

    I can’t seem to properly browse this page from my droid!

    Reply

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