Today, I decided to treat myself to chocolate. Except, chocolate for me is a necessity and I firmly believe that every mother is entitled to chocolate every single day. Even the good days… But instead of just grabbing some chocolate chips as I usually do, this time I made truffles! These are super easy. They do require a lot of steps, but your friends and family will all be impressed. Truffles are a fun variations for a Christmas cookie plate too.

This is a recipe from Truffles, Candies, and Confections by Carole Bloom. Its a great book for the casual confectioner such as myself and there are TONS of recipes. The directions are also very clear and informative too.

Ingredients
2 1/2 pounds bittersweet chocolate, finally chopped. (I used chocolate chips, but if you feel like splurging a little, use the ghirardelli chocolate.)
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
3 to 4 TBS cocoa powder

Directions
Place 1 pound of the chocolate in a mixing bowl. In a saucepan  bring the the heavy whipping cream to a boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let it sit for 1 minute, then stir the chocolate and heavy whipping cream together until the mixture is smooth. This will be your truffle cream. Let the truffle cream sit for several hours at room temperature (you can even leave it over night) or in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours. The cream should be pretty thick.

When the truffle cream is ready, line a cookie sheet with waxed or parchment paper. (I didn’t have any and it worked out just fine.) Using a small ice cream scoop or even a spoon, form small mounds (about a 1 inch diameter) and then chill the cream again for 6 hours in the refrigerator or 2 in the freezer. At this point, your truffle cream does not have to be perfectly round.

Next, dust your hands with cocoa powder and roll the mounds into balls. Again, chill the truffle cream for 2 hours in the freezer.

And we’re almost done! Bring the truffles to room temperature. Melt the other 1 1/2 pounds of chocolate as follows. (These directions are from Ina Garten on the Food Network.) Following these directions on melting your chocolate will prevent those wired grayish streaks in your chocolate called a bloom. “To make tempered chocolate, chop the chocolate into pieces and place 3/4 of it in a small glass bowl in a microwave for 20 seconds exactly. Stir the chocolate and continue to microwave for 20 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until the chocolate is smooth and shiny. Add the remaining 1/4 of the chocolate and stir until smooth.”

Dip your chocolates with a fork and place them on parchment or wax paper until the chocolate is hard. You can decorate the top of your truffles by drizzling melted chocolate over the top or sprinkling them with nuts if you’ve added some in.

Enjoy! Its not as much work as it seems. Just lots of little steps! Its so worth it!!

For fun variations, you can replace the chocolate with white chocolate and use 3/4 cups heavy whipping cream. You can also use milk chocolate if you prefer and use 1 cup of heavy whipping cream. You can also chop up nuts, heath bars, pretzels or what ever you want and add them to your truffle centers. I made white chocolate centers with pretzels.

They will stay fresh in your freezer for up to two months, so make a big batch and keep them on hand for special occasions.

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