Homemade Chocolate Truffles: An Easy and Delicious Gift Idea

 

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My homemade Amaretto Almond Truffles

 

“All you need is love.
But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.”

~ Charles M. Schulz

A Fabulous Gift to Give and Receive

High quality chocolate truffles are a chocolate lover’s dream come true. Made from only a few simple but perfect ingredients—good chocolate, heavy cream and a bit of butter—truffles impart their pure chocolatey goodness in one perfect, creamy, heavenly bite. The other great thing about truffles, that you may not know, is that they are fun and easy to make—albeit somewhat of a sweet chocolatey mess (which, of course, is the kind of problem one wishes to encounter more of in life). If you can bear to give any away, these Dark Chocolate Truffles make a lovely gift.

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A medley of my homemade dark chocolate truffles rolled in various coatings.

 

 “There are four basic food groups:
milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate, and chocolate truffles.”

~ Unknown

Homemade Chocolate Truffles

Chocolate truffles are essentially chocolate ganache which has set and then been scooped out into rough looking, somewhat misshapen rounds (which resemble real truffles, hence the name). The hand-rolled truffles are then tossed in various coatings, such as Dutch process cocoa powder, chopped toasted nuts (pecans, almonds or walnuts are classic choices), toasted shredded coconut, shaved chocolate, or any other coating of your choice. They can also be dipped in melted chocolate. The taste of your truffles depends entirely on the quality of your chocolate, so make sure to use a high quality chocolate that you enjoy savouring on its own.

 

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Perhaps I can interest you in one of my handmade chocolate-dipped truffles?

 

Dark Chocolate Truffles Recipe:

Adapted from Stephanie Jaworski, Joy of Baking

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces (227 grams) high quality semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces (I use Bernard Callebaut semi-sweet chocolate drops)
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy whipping cream (double cream; 35-40% butterfat)
  • 2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter, diced into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons alcohol or liqueur of your choice (optional)
    (I like to use Amaretto)
  • Truffle coatings of your choice—Dutch process cocoa powder, chopped toasted almonds, pecans or walnuts, shaved chocolate, toasted shredded coconut, or whatever else you’d like to roll your truffles in.

Directions:

Making the Ganache
Place the chopped chocolate in a medium-sized heat-resistant glass bowl. In a small saucepan, heat the cream and butter over medium heat until it just comes to a boil. Immediately pour the boiling cream over the chocolate bits. Place a lid or plate over the bowl and allow to stand for a couple of minutes, then gently stir with a spatula or whisk (do not vigorously mix), starting at the centre and continuing in ever-widening circles until the chocolate has fully melted, the cream is integrated and the ganache is smooth. If the chocolate doesn’t melt completely, heat it in the microwave for about 10-20 seconds.

If you would like to make more than one flavour of truffle, divide the ganache into two smaller bowls. If you are using liqueur, add it now (if using two different flavours add one tablespoon of liqueur per bowl). Stir well, cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator until the truffle mixture sets and becomes firm. This may take several hours or overnight. I usually make my ganache the night before and shape my truffles the following day.

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Yummy creamy dark chocolate ganache.

Making the Truffles
Prepare all your truffle coatings in advance and place each one in its own shallow, flat bowl. You want enough coating in the bowl to be able to easily coat your truffles.

Remove the truffle mixture from the refrigerator and allow it to stand at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes to allow it to become more malleable. Scoop some of the ganache mixture with a small spoon and use your hands to form the ganache into round or misshapen, bite-sized rounds (don’t worry about making perfectly round balls—they are supposed to be a bit misshapen). Your hands will get very chocolatey at this point, as the ganache will melt quickly in the palm of your hands—this is the deliciously messy part. Immediately roll the truffle in your coating of choice and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet or tray. Cover and place in the refrigerator until firm. Truffles can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple weeks or frozen for a couple months.

Makes about 30 small truffles.

To Toast Nuts: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and bake nuts (pecans, walnuts or almonds) about 8 – 10 minutes or until brown and fragrant. Once the nuts have cooled, chop coarsely.

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Orange Truffles, Dark & White Chocolate Truffles and Amaretto Almond Truffles.

 

Variations:

Orange Truffles

Add a little orange liqueur into the ganache before chilling (about 1 tablespoon for half of the ganache recipe). Allow the ganache to set and form the truffles according to directions above. Chill truffles in refrigerator for 5 to 10 minutes. Once chilled, dip the truffle in tempered dark chocolate. I dip the truffle into the melted chocolate using a small spoon, making sure the entire truffle is coated. Using a small cocktail fork or a fondue fork, gently lift the truffle and allow excess chocolate to drip off. Carefully place the dipped truffle on a parchment-lined baking sheet or tray (do not place dipped truffles on a cooling rack, as they will stick). Place a small piece of candied orange peel on top before the chocolate sets. See my previous post, Apricot Brandy White Fruitcake, for my homemade candied orange peel recipe. If you’ve never tempered chocolate, see my previous post, Chocolate Lollipops, for easy instructions on how to temper chocolate.

Dark & White Chocolate Truffles

Dip the dark truffles in tempered dark chocolate (or white chocolate), then drizzle the truffles with melted white chocolate (or dark chocolate). You can use a spoon to drizzle, but it tends to blob somewhat so if you want a uniform look use a fine piping tip to pipe the chocolate drizzle quickly over the truffle in a thin stream.

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Dark & White Chocolate Truffles, Orange Dark Chocolate Truffles and Amaretto Almond Truffles.


What To Do With Your Leftover Melted Chocolate:

You can spoon any leftover melted dark chocolate into rounds on parchment paper and set in the refrigerator. Once set, you can drizzle any leftover white chocolate over the chocolate rounds in a fun haphazard fashion. I like to call these my “Jackson Pollock” Chocolate Discs.

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My “Jackson Pollock” chocolate discs, made from leftover melted chocolate.

 

For another easy and delicious gift idea, see Chocolate-Covered Marzipan Balls.

 

Image Credits:

All photos by madlyinlovewithlife; © 2011 and 2014 madlyinlovewithlife

16 thoughts on “Homemade Chocolate Truffles: An Easy and Delicious Gift Idea

  1. Oh, my, gosh — do these truffles look delicious! I mean, if I could grab them off the screen I’d be a very happy woman right now. :) I didn’t know that truffles were so named because they’re shaped like a truffle (I know, duh? me!). Nor did I know that they’re made of such pure and simple ingredients, which makes them even nearer and dearer to my heart. Thanks for sharing the recipe — I may just have to give it a try soon! Have a wonderful day, Jeannie! :)

    • Yes, good quality homemade truffles (or those made by artisan chocolatiers) contain only those pure ingredients: good chocolate, heavy cream and a bit of butter. I didn’t know that either, until I started making them myself. Of course, there are commercially produced knock-offs. I’ve seen some commercial truffles made with palm oil, which mimics cocoa butter, in order to keep the cost down. But truffles really are very easy to make at home, especially if you just roll them in a bit of Dutch process cocoa powder. I believe that the first chocolate truffles were traditionally rolled in cocoa powder to resemble the soil found on real freshly unearthed truffles. If you can’t have a truffle today, the next best thing is a piece of really good chocolate! Have a happy day! :))

  2. You sold me. This is one of those things that not only looks guaranteed to be delicious, but even a semi-moron like myself should be able to manage it (especially since messes -chocolate or otherwise- are my specialty). Thanks a bunch.

  3. Hello Jeannie,
    Oh my goodness…these look divine, even better than what I see at those fancy chocolate stores!
    They would be a wonderful gift indeed! When I showed my husband this post, he said your partner is a very lucky man :))
    As always, thank you for sharing!
    Hope you’re having a great weekend,
    Takami

    • Good Morning Takami! Thank you so much for your kind words! Truffles are so easy to make and, if you use excellent quality chocolate, they really do taste as creamy and delicious as the ones in the artisan chocolate shops. I usually only make these for gifts, so most of them are given away, but I do allow my partner to have his share! :))) Wishing you and your husband a very happy week ahead. :))

  4. Oooo….! Fancy-schmancy truffles! I didn’t know they needn’t be “perfectly” round. You’ve saved me some time! And since I don’t/can’t drink, you brought up a good point: liqueur!

    Your photography is so soft and artistic…and everything is so clean! Grrr! lol

  5. Pingback: Chocolate-Covered Marzipan Balls: Another Easy and Delicious Gift Idea « madlyinlovewithlife

  6. Oh my gosh, I really have to try these. Yours look so perfect and yummy! You are such a great cook, photographer and writer! Thanks so much for sharing this recipe! Now to find time, never enough of that.

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