Truly Decadent Truffles are Easy to Make

Chocolate is everyone’s favourite treat, and chocolate truffles are a great way to feed the craving. They represent true decadence and are a rare and treasured experience. Chocolate truffles, particularly homemade, which are deceptively easy to make, are bite size pieces of heaven. Great gifts for Christmas and other holidays too, when people revel in indulging in truly rich food.

If you want to make some truffles you could do worse than follow the recipe below. This is the basic mix that produces the richest creamiest truffles, but you can add flavourings to suit your own taste. One word of warning, don’t follow this recipe if you are on a diet.

First, get some good chocolate. This is essential. I prefer not to use cooking chocolate as, although rich in cocoa solids, it is usually too bitter. It is hard to define good chocolate because it will depend on taste but generally it should be a plain chocolate, high in cocoa solids but smooth and not too bitter to the taste. Use 125 grams of the chocolate.

The second ingredient is single cream, and you will need 5 fluid ounces of this. It works out at about half an average sized carton. You can add a little more or less depending on taste.

Flavourings for the truffles are up to you and what you like. The common ones are rum (rum and chocolate are a marriage made in heaven), brandy, coffee, ginger and orange. Choose your own favourite, or a selection, and add to taste. If using liquid flavourings temper the amount of cream slightly to compensate, otherwise the truffle will not be solid enough.

Crunches and coverings. Chopped nuts, crumbed biscuits (digestives or ginger snaps are my favourite and both are perfect), raisins and desiccated coconut can all be added to the mixture to form solid fillings. Outer coatings can include a dusting of cocoa powder or icing sugar or roll the truffles in hundreds and thousands.

To make the truffles, heat a pan of water to simmering point and keep to a gentle simmer. Break the chocolate into small pieces and add to a mixing bowl. Place the mixing bowl on top of the pan of simmering water. This will melt the chocolate slowly and prevent it from going grainy.

Once the chocolate has melted, stir in the cream and mix well. Add any other flavourings (rum and chopped walnuts are excellent) and mix well. Remove the mixing bowl from the heat.

Using a melon baller or your hands, roll the mixture into small balls, about an inch in diameter. When you have a good ball shape, dust the truffle with any of the coverings that you have decided upon and place the finished truffle in a small paper cake casing. Leave to set. Perfectly scrumptious truffles with little effort.

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