dark chocolate truffles

Love Day… and Dark Chocolate Truffles

Jump to Dark Chocolate Truffle Recipe

 
A few weeks before last Christmas, my girls and I were chatting as we do, and the subject of what our favorite holiday was came up. I figured it was a no-brainer, Christmas, of course, for all three of us. After all, the excitement was in full swing; decorations had gone up, wish lists written, Santa seen. Hailey and I were quick to declare it the best holiday ever, and I expected Ella to chime in, but she surprised me and asked: “What’s the love day called again?”. Valentine’s day is her favorite holiday. I shouldn’t have been surprised because she’d expressed this before, but that was right around last Valentine’s day, and I figured, being a six-year-old, it was merely the freshest holiday in her memory. She stuck to it though, even amid the Christmas hype.
 

The thing Ella loves about Valentine’s day is simple. To her, it’s a day devoted to telling everyone in your life how much you love them and what you love about them, and that’s the most important thing you can do. She started on her class Valentine’s over a week ago and made a point of picking one quality for each classmate then thanking them for being funny, kind, a friend, silly, smart, polite, whatever stood out to her. I had zero input except to ask her if she’d like to decorate them a bit more. She gave me a condescending glance, the words being far more important to her than the decorations, so I backed off.
 

 

When I was in first grade (and every other grade for that matter), I was so painfully shy the thought of personally thanking a boy in my class for being kind was beyond unthinkable, but she’s ever so sincere about it. I’d like to take credit for raising such a thoughtful child, but nature wins over nurture here. Her twin sister told me she wasn’t going to make Valentine’s for the class because it wasn’t required. She’s only shown interest in participating in the last twelve hours because she found out she gets to decorate a box to take to school to collect her Valentine’s. I’ll be surprised if she puts as much as her classmate’s names on her cards (the first grade me could relate to that).
 

 

I really like Ella’s take on the day. It’s not about romantic love, it’s not about high expectations, it’s just “the love day” and an opportunity to express how you feel.

 

 
homemade box of valentines
 
 

 

Of course, in our house, it’s also mainly about chocolate, which is the only reason I liked Valentine’s day when I was young. My dad used to get my sister and me little heart-shaped boxes of chocolates, and nothing could have made us happier. This truffle recipe is the one I used at the restaurant years ago, and they are truly decadent. You will be amazed by how easy they are!

 
 

Dark Chocolate Truffles

(makes 12 – 14)

 

 
*8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate (chopped or chips)
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon coffee extract
(or you may use 1 ounce of your favorite liqueur, Gran Marnier, Peppermint Schnapps, Kahlua, Amaretto, Hazelnut, etc. in place of the vanilla and coffee extracts)
 
*8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (chopped or chips)
 

 

OPTIONAL TOPPINGS
 toasted coconut
cocoa powder
chopped nuts
sea salt
 

 

*Please use good quality chocolate such as Ghiradelli (widely available), Scharffen Berger or Guittard.

 

 
60% cacao bittersweet chocolate chips
 

 

Place 8oz semi-sweet chocolate in the top of a double boiler over, not in the water and add the heavy whipping cream. Allow to melt over medium heat and stir until smooth.

 

pouring heavy cream over dark chocolate chips
making dark chocolate ganache in double boiler
 

 

Remove from heat and stir in butter until melted.

 

stirring butter in ganache
vanilla and coffee extracts
 

 

Stir in vanilla and coffee extracts or your favorite liqueur. You’ve just made a ganache.

 

adding flavoring to ganache
 

 

If your double boiler has annoying grooves in it as mine does, transfer mixture to a large bowl before beginning the cooling process.

 

 
ganache
 

 

(Optional step to speed things up) Place your pan or bowl over a larger pan/bowl filled with ice water and stir, scraping sides, with a rubber spatula until it cools completely and begins to thicken.

 

chocolate ganache over ice
dark chocolate ganache
 

 

Whether or not you did the last step, place ganache in the refrigerator until it hardens up enough to scoop into balls.

 

ganache covered in plastic wrap
 

 

Before scooping fill a bowl with hot water to dip a small ice cream scoop or melon baller in.

 
dipping ice cream scoop in hot water
 

 

Scoop out balls onto parchment or waxed paper. Refrigerate for at least another 20 minutes.

 

scooping chocolate ganache
scooped balls of chocolate gananche
 

 

Chop 8oz chocolate or use baking chips.

 

chopping dark chocolate
 

 

Place 4oz in the double boiler over not in water and allow to melt completely on medium heat.

 

melted dark chocolate in double boiler
chopped chocolate In double boiler
melted dark chocolate in double boiler
 

 

Remove from heat and stir in remaining 4oz chocolate until fully melted. The chocolate should be just about body temperature (95 -98 degrees)

 

*I’m not going to get all technical about tempering chocolate here because I want you to relax and enjoy your life. If you follow my instructions above and don’t let the chocolate get too hot you should be fine. Remember, the toppings will hide any imperfections and if you refrigerate the truffles it will help keep a nice texture.

 

melting dark chocolate in double boiler
 

 

Prop the pan the on the edge of a plate or use a dishtowel to tilt it and allow for a deeper pool of chocolate.

 

melted dark chocolate in double boiler
 

 

Remove the balls of ganache from the fridge. Before dipping, roll each ball in your hands quickly, squeezing a bit to make sure it won’t fall apart when dipped.

 

shaping ganache into balls
 

 

Dip it into the chocolate until completely covered, using a fork to turn it and lift it out.

 

 
dipping ganache in melted chocolate
 

 

Place on parchment or waxed paper and top with whatever you like. If using chopped nuts, roll the whole truffle in a small bowl of them for best results.

 

 
 toasted coconut

 

toasted coconut chocolate truffle
 

 

cocoa powder

 

chocolate truffle sprinkled with cocoa
 

 

chopped almonds

 

 chocolate almond truffle
 

 

Allow them to cool at room temperature or, if it’s warm in your house, in the refrigerator.

 

assorted chocolate truffles
 
 
 

 

Happy Valentine’s Day! Keep it simple and sweet…
 

 

Shower the people you love with love
Show them the way you feel
Things are gonna be much better if you only will.”
James Taylor

I'd love to hear your feedback!