Storm Ciara hit Devon hard on Sunday which meant that getting out and about was less than appealing. The winds were gusting and the rain was pouring which meant that an afternoon was freed up for fun indoor activities. I had been wanting to have a go at making my own chocolates for a while and storm Ciara made that possible. She was good for something!
The ingredients are few and the process is simple. All you need is a couple of hours on a wet and windy afternoon to enjoy getting covered in chocolate! I would also add here that if you have any bored children in need of entertaining this recipe is really easy and a little magical in the process. A few blocks of really good dark chocolate and some double cream magically turns into a dark, smooth ganache which when set can be rolled into bite-sized truffles (the messy and fun bit for kids!). Each of those dark chocolate bites can then be rolled in chopped nuts for a Ferrero Rocher type vibe or freeze-dried strawberries for the classic chocolate/strawberry combo. If you want to keep it really simple just dust each truffle with good quality cocoa powder.
These little dark chocolate truffles make a lovely gift for your loved one, your pal, your neighbour or are perfect as an after-dinner chocolate with coffee. They are rich and decadent and a real treat. I honestly can’t tell you how easy they were to make. Why not give them a try for yourself? With Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day approaching they would make an ideal gift. There is something so special about a homemade gift don’t you think?
These chocolates are made in three stages. Stage one is for melting and mixing. Stage two is setting and waiting and stage three is rolling, decorating and getting mucky! The mixture makes over 20 little truffles. Obviously it is up to you how big you roll yours but my advice to you would go smaller rather than larger.
I struggled a little with stage three and the messy bit. I don’t like the feeling of having goo all over my hands so in between making four or five truffles I would wash my hands to start the next batch. I have to admit, as my truffle making went on they got less and less round and smooth due to my slight dislike of stuff on my mitts. I am the same with anything that sticks to my hands. Think pasta making and bread dough. Eek! If you are like me don’t worry. Give your hands a wash or wipe between truffles. Remember, these are homemade chocolates. They don’t have to be perfect. Rustic and rugged is all good.
For those of you that love getting covered then stage three will be the most fun for you guys.
Once rolled and decorated you can pop them in a large Tupperware and put them back in the fridge until needed. The dark chocolate truffles will keep for a week if stored in an airtight Tupperware and chilled. Just remember they do contain double cream so need that chilling but bring to room temperature for serving for that optimum chocolate hit.
- 300g dark chocolate at least 70% cocoa
- 300ml double cream
- 30g salted butter at room temperature
- 100g cocoa powder
- 100g chopped hazelnuts
- 20g freeze dried strawberries
- Put the chocolate in a medium sized bowl. In a small pan gently heat the double cream and salted butter until the cream is steaming. Do not let it boil. Take it off the heat. Use a rubber spatula to mix the cream and butter together and then pour over the chocolate. Leave the chocolate for a minute to begin the melting process and then stir together. Set aside to cool, then cover and place in the fridge to chill for two hours minimum.
- Put a teaspoon in a mug of just boiled water then use it to scoop equal sized balls. Roll each ball in the palms of your hands to create a sphere. Place them on a board.
- On three plates place separately the hazelnuts, cocoa powder and freeze dried strawberries. Roll each of the truffles in one of the toppings and then chill on a plate for an hour. These truffles will keep for a week in an airtight container. Serve them at room temperature.