truffles two ways
Sweet tooth? Is chocolate the thing you crave? Are you a regular Reese’s and m&m’s kind of person or do you prefer more refined Vosges or Godiva indulgences? To be candid, I could go either way. It depends on the occasion. When the kids come through the neighborhood at Halloween, believe me, I’m indulging in a few “fun-size” peanut m&m’s or maybe a Butterfinger. While any candy is a treat, to me, truffles are special.
Maybe because they’re made with better quality chocolate or because the flavors are richer and more intense. I don’t know, chocolate truffles aren’t a snack that you scarf down because “you’re not you when your hungry.” Plus, you only need one or two to be perfectly satisfied — unlike the “pounder” bags of chocolate sold in the grocery stores – which are oftentimes devoured with the same mindless munching as bag of chips.
My friend, Nola shared her recipe for chili chocolate truffles with me a few weeks ago and I knew I had to try them. What better time, than Valentines Day?
So, I went shopping for the chocolate — this recipe calls for six ounces of dark chocolate but the bars are sold in four ounce increments. Sure, I could buy two bars, use one and a half and save the remaining half (yeah, right). I did the only logical thing I could. I bought three bars and made a double-batch. (Smirk).
As I was rooting around in my spice drawer looking for my chili powder, I came across a few jars of curry powder. Well, I did have enough chocolate for two batches. I decided to make one with the chiles and a second batch using two types of curry. Don’t make a face. Come on — I can see you wrinkling your nose and pursing your lips. Trust me on this.
I’m not going to kid you, these truffles have a kick. The chili can be a little intense for someone who prefers things on the mild side. You can dial back on the chile or eliminate the cayenne if your spice averse, but if you like that tingle on your tongue, this is for you. The curry truffles are milder, meltingly sweet with a complex finish. Try them with a glass of Merlot. Let me know what you think and have a Happy Valentines Day!
Chocolate truffles are very customizable. In these two renditions, one is spiced with chile powder (recipe via my buddy Nola - who loves a tingle on her tongue) the second is curry and coconut. Decidedly grown-up candy and its fabulous!
- 2/3 cup whipping cream
- 12 ounces good quality semisweet or bittersweet chocolate such as Lindt or Valrhona
- 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder ground
- 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder ground
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
- 1/2 teaspoon sweet curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon hot curry powder
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup flaked sweetened coconut lightly toasted
- 1/4 cup salted cashews finely chopped
Chop chocolate into small pieces. Fill the bottom of a double boiler or small saucepan with one cup of water. Over medium heat, bring water to a simmer and reduce heat to medium low.
In the top of double boiler add chocolate and cream. Stir just until chocolate melts and blends with the cream into a smooth uniform ganache.
Transfer half of the chocolate to another bowl.
To one bowl of chocolate, add the ancho and chipotle chili powders. Stir to combine. Taste mixture and if not hot enough and cayenne. Stir to combine evenly. Cover and chill until firm enough to shape (1 1/2 to 2 hours).
Add sweet and hot curry powder to the second bowl of ganache. Stir to combine. Cover and chill until firm enough to shape (1 1/2 to 2 hours).
Scoop out rounded teaspoonfuls of the chocolate mixture and quickly press and roll them into rough 1-inch balls. Roll the chili truffles in the cocoa powder to coat. Roll the curry truffles in either the coconut or cashews to coat. Place balls on a small baking sheet and chill until firm.
Store truffles in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Serve truffles at room temperature for the best flavor.
(If you don't have a double boiler, place a glass bowl on top of the pot with the simmering water - making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn't touch the water)