Friday, January 1, 2010

Sweet Endings and Beginnings

Each year around Christmas time, I make chocolate truffles. I weaseled the recipe out of my older brother's wife, Ann. Ann is a marvelous cook. Even though I usually serve fresh fruit for dessert, I have found that most people love to end a festive meal with just a little chocolate. These are perfect because they are small, about the size of a macadamia nut, but their flavor is huge.

Unlike the large, domed, beautiful candies with fancy chocolate shells and decorations sold as truffles today, these actually look a little like the
dark, misshapen mushrooms with a dusting of spores in the cup. I try to dress them up with silver, gold or Christmas candy cups but they still squat in the bottom, refusing to look pretty, until you taste them, when they become very pretty indeed.

The first taste is of the cocoa powder in which they are rolled - slightly bitter and dry - followed by the most amazing sensation as they melt almost instantly on the tongue, flooding the mouth with warm, rich, dark chocolate with a hint of liqueur. One gets more chocolate bang for the buck with these than with any other truffles ever I've tasted.

They are not difficult to make - no tempering and no thermometers - and they keep well in the refrigerator. If you are afraid of raw egg yolks, you may want to pass these by but I can assure you that I've never killed anyone yet. And even if they did die, believe me, they'd die happy.

I made two batches this year and have been giving them as gifts this Solstice season. Talk about a cure for the winter blues! I saved just two, one for me and one for My Beloved, to begin 2010 with a smile.

Happy New Year and all the best in 2010.

Ann's Chocolate Truffles

6 oz semisweet chocolate (the better the chocolate, the better the truffles; don't skimp)
2 oz butter, cut into small pieces (1/2 stick)
2 egg yolks
2 tsp liqueur of choice or 1/4 tsp flavor extract
unsweetened cocoa powder

In the top of a double boiler, melt chocolate. Add butter and stir until incorporated. Add egg yolks and stir well. Add liqueur and stir in.

Set the top of the double boiler over a bowl of ice and water, and stir mixture until it holds a definite shape. Drop on waxed paper by the teaspoonful and let stand until firm enough to shape into uneven balls. Drop balls into a small bowl containing a few tablespoons of cocoa powder and roll them around to coat. Place in candy cups and allow to ripen for one day. To store more than one day, refrigerate. Serve at room temperature. Makes about 60.

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Blogger Kailyn said...

I haven't made truffles in years. I'm almost inspired to once more.

Friday, January 01, 2010  
Blogger cookiecrumb said...

60! No wonder you give them away... But they are small.
Such a great recipe; thanks.

Happy 2010, Zoomie!

Friday, January 01, 2010  
Blogger katiez said...

May I have that, please? PLEASE!!!!
hAPPY nEW yEAR! (I shouldn't shout)

Saturday, January 02, 2010  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Kailyn, I'd wait until you have a good reason to give some away - otherwise, these are very dangerous.

Cookiecrumb, Happy New Year to you, Cranky and Bartlett, too.

KatieZ, yes. Send your address and I'll mail you some. :-) Bonne Année to you and ton mari, too.

Saturday, January 02, 2010  

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