April 16, 2008

the trouble with truffles...

...where do I begin?


Truffles are delicious, whether they're made with cream, store-bought frosting, cream cheese, or just straight chocolate and sugar. I'll eat 'em flavored with mint or fruit, filled with caramel or marshmallow, or flecked with toffee bits, nuts, or chocolate chips. A bad truffle is hard to find.

That being said, making truffles brings all sorts of problems to the table. First and absolutely foremost, I can't stop eating them. I'll eat one, leave the room, and even cleanse my palate, and I'm still inexplicably drawn back to the fridge for another. And another. Even in making them, only about 3/4 of the mixture actually makes it to truffle-form--I do a lot of utensil and bowl licking (sanitarily, of course). Truffles are, in fact, a mixing-bowl-licker's dream, as there tends to be a lot left behind.

The second issue I have with truffles is the chocolate-coating process. They say practice makes perfect, but I think I'm getting worse. Last time I ended up with some hideous (although still delicious) mounds of lumpy and extremely unattractive chocolate. The dipping chocolate always hardens up on me before I'm finished with my coating and I end up reheating it several times. I believe I need to learn a tempering technique. I've also heard that a small crock pot works well to keep the chocolate liquid-y, but I haven't tried that yet.

For this batch of truffles, I tried a new recipe. Where did I find it? I have no idea. Can I find it again to give credit where credit is due? Unfortunately, no. So if this is your recipe, thanks. I took the easy way out and rolled the little nuggets in powdered sugar. (Wow--with my laziness here and my aforementioned sloth-like tendencies, ya'll are going to think I'm a complete waste of space. I'm not, I promise. I do have my moments.)

Magnificent Mint Truffles
(makes about 50 1-inch balls of evil deliciousness)

1 8-oz package cream cheese, softened
3 cups powdered sugar, sifted + extra for rolling
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips, melted
1 teaspoon mint extract

In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until well blended. Stir in melted chocolate and mint extract until no streaks remain. Refrigerate for about 1 hour. Shape into balls, roll in powdered sugar, and place under lock and key until time to serve.



29 comments:

Sandy said...

I could just take that right off the internet and eat it! LOL! YUM!
Thanks for visiting me!!

Cheryl said...

Mmmm, I love truffles!

When dipping them, have you tried adding a little melted paraffin or shortening to the chocolate. I've found that really helps with dipping and coating. It thins out the coating somewhat, but it still firms up just the same when it cools. I also use a really narrow container for dipping, like a Pyrex measuring cup, so I have plenty of depth to dip them into.

Regardless, your truffles look delicious!

And thanks for all the comments on my blog. They always make me smile and laugh. ; )

kimberleyblue said...

That's the reason I don't make truffles - I'd eat waaay too many.

Though I may make an exception to this rule for mint truffles - those look great!

Elle said...

I'm with Kimberley--I'd eat them all if I made them! Those look deeelicious!

Mike of Mike's Table said...

Lazy? I think not--these look spectacular to me, and as delicious as the chocolate ones are (likewise for bowl-licking duty), its nice to see something different. I'd definitely gobble these up.

LyB said...

Those look deliciously evil alright! And I must try that crock pot trick, sounds like it would work wonders!

RecipeGirl said...

Yummy!

Truffle dipping is tricky business. Add lots of patience!

April in CT said...

My husband has banned me from buying truffles (he's not a sweets eater, but he inhales truffles), but he never said anything about me making them at home. Loophole!

kat said...

i'm with you when cooking sweets, I end up eating so much of the batter raw even when I shouldn't!

Deborah said...

I was going to say what cheryl said - to add a bit of shortening. That always helps me - although I'm still not very good at dipping them! This reminds me that I haven't had a good truffle in ages!

Karen said...

Well, they looks great!

Kevin said...

Those look good! I did not know that you could make truffles with things other than chocolate. These cream cheese and chocolate chip truffles sound good. The mint extract is nice touch!

michelle @ TNS said...

mint truffles are my absolute favorite, tho i've never made them with cream cheese...i bet that's yummy.

i always F the dipping part up too, no matter how hard i try.

descentintodessert said...

mint truffles! my head just exploded! amazing! growing up, my mother kind of implied that truffles were only coated in cocoa, i think to discourage me from eating one trillion. it only kind of worked.

Ellie @ Kitchen Wench said...

What gorgeous truffles! I like the method too - sounds much easier than traditional chocolate-dipped ones!

Lina said...

they look great to me!

StickyGooeyCreamyChewy said...

I can never pass up a good truffle!I have the same truffle issues. I use toothpicks for dipping and that helps. I just bought a truffle dipper at sur la Table. I'll let you know if it works.

Pixie said...

I have made truffles just once before; it's certainly hard work keeping the chocolate on them and then dipping them into sprinkles or nuts or what have you. And you certainly can never get enough of them! Well done as I know how much work is entailed in making them.

dabooklady said...

yummy what a great photo and write up..I love truffles...do stop by and enter my recipe contest
http://dabookrecipe.blogspot.com/2008/03/march-contest-all-about-recipes.html

I have never made them but love to eat them.. :)

noble pig said...

Well, they look divine. But I hear you on the batter thing. I've started chewing gum during the batter making (a super minty one) to try and control the little wee bits of self-control I have. It's so hard though. Can you send me some?

Melanie said...

Trouble or not, those look fantastic! And chocolate and mint (as we have discussed before) is a dreamy combination. I think they turned out perfect!

LisaRene said...

Oooo, these are so bad yet so good! I'd be happy with a big heaping spoonful of truffle and eat it like a sucker :) I understand the addiction and simply can not make things like this or I'll eat them all within a day! This would have to be something I would make and bring to a friends house/party/hostess gift or something like that and be happy with just licking the bowl :)

Emiline said...

Who doesn't love a truffle?? It's the world's most perfect food.

I'm considering making truffles today and stuffing them into cupcakes.

Kim said...

Grace they look good. Is that a Southern thing eating raw batter? Because if it is, I need to know so I can start practicing.

Rosie said...

I wish I could find away to put my hand in and take a truffle to try!! Those look soooooo scrummy :)

Rosie x

Krysta said...

Can't type... keyboard is malfunctioning because of the drool.

TBC said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog and helping me find yours.:)
I found that truffle-making was not as easy as it was made to sound by so many. I had a bit of a problem making my batch.
Your mint truffles sound heavenly! I've tried mine with balsamic vinegar and it was pretty good.

kellypea said...

Those sound pretty dangerous. I've never made them an any version before. Where have I been? I am quite the bowl-licker, though...

Mrs. L said...

These look awesome. Since I have had the same trouble with the dipping, I may have to try and try again.