Eggnog Truffles

Eggnog Truffles_site

If you like eggnog and you like white chocolate, you’re gonna love these sinfully decadent little mouthfuls of yum. As I explained in my last post, eggnog is taking its own sweet time to come into favour in Kiwi-land, so I’m on a mission to incorporate its unique flavours into my festive baking this year.

This recipe comes from Taste.com.au. I didn’t make any changes to the recipe, though in hindsight I’d recommend (as other reviewers have) that you double the amount of brandy, as you can’t really taste it (I’ve subsequently changed the amount in the recipe from one tablespoon to two).

The recipe is as simple as it gets. However… as I discovered, working with white chocolate (which isn’t even real chocolate) does have its pitfalls, due to the fact that it has a lower burn point than regular darker chocolate. If you don’t want to consign a batch of white chocolate to the bin as I had to (yes, my mother regularly informs me that I’m not quite ready for Masterchef!), you might want to consider these helpful suggestions from Craftsy.com:

  1. First and foremost, don’t overheat the chocolate! Ensure the simmering water in the saucepan doesn’t touch the bottom of the bowl that the chocolate is in. Also, bring the water in the saucepan to a gentle boil, then turn the heat down to low and only then place the bowl of chocolate on top.
  2. Don’t let any steam from the boiler, or any water at all for that matter, get into the bowl of chocolate or it will seize.
  3. Once the chocolate has nearly melted, take the bowl off the saucepan – the residual heat will melt the rest. Once the chocolate’s fully melted, you can then start using it to coat your truffles.
  4. Troubleshooting: If your chocolate seizes up, you can add (at room temperature) any flavourless oil, butter, milk or cream, one tablespoon at a time to loosen up the mixture. However, the consistency will not be quite the same.

I hope you find those suggestions as useful as I did. And just a note: you can, of course, use a microwave to melt your chocolate if you prefer, though it can be harder to control the level of heat.

Now, just to finish, can I add… the quality of the white chocolate is absolutely key to this recipe. If you use regular old baking chocolate, you will probably end up with cloyingly ‘burn-the-back-of-your-throat’ sweet truffles. I reckon, if you’re going to go to the expense of making this recipe in the first place, you might as well do it right and use high-end chocolate, like Lindt. Do that, and you’ll end up with something that’s got real depth of flavour and makes everyone go ‘wow’. Enjoy!


EGGNOG TRUFFLES

Makes at least 30

Ingredients:

  • 360g (12.5 oz) good-quality white chocolate, finely chopped
  • 80ml (1/3 cup) heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons brandy, or to taste
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For dipping and serving:

  • 375g (13 oz)  good-quality white chocolate, finely chopped
  • Ground nutmeg, to dust

Method:

  1. Place a saucepan with a good couple of inches of water onto the stove top and bring to a gentle boil over medium heat. Turn down to low until it’s gently simmering.
  2. Place a bowl over top of the saucepan – one which sits high enough so that the water below doesn’t touch it. Add the chocolate, cream, brandy and nutmeg into the bowl and stir with a metal spoon until chocolate is nearly melted. Take off the heat and stir, letting the residual heat melt the remaining chocolate.
  3. Let the chocolate mix cool a little before placing the bowl in the fridge for 2 hours or until firm enough to roll into balls. If it hardens too much, simply take it out of the fridge and let it soften a little at room temperature.
  4. Line a tray with non-stick baking paper.Use a teaspoon or mini melon baller to scoop out chocolate mixture and use your hands to roll into a ball. Place on prepared tray. Repeat with the remaining chocolate mixture, then place in the fridge for about 1 hour or until firm.
  5. Place second measure of chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan with simmering water (ensuring the water doesn’t touch the bowl) and stir with a metal spoon until chocolate is nearly melted. Take off the heat and stir, letting the residual heat melt the remaining chocolate.
  6. Line a tray with non-stick baking paper. Use 2 forks to dip a truffle into the melted chocolate to coat (don’t let it sit in there too long or it will start melting). Remove truffle, tapping the fork handle gently on the edge of the bowl to shake off any excess chocolate. Place on prepared tray. Repeat with remaining truffles and melted chocolate. Place in the fridge for at least 20 minutes to set.
  7. Dust truffles with a little nutmeg and serve.

 Food Photography Info: Canon 550D (EOS Rebel T2i); Canon 50mm 1.8 lens / Natural lighting

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