Chocolate Caramel Truffles
PLUS 2 TABLESPOONS GRAN,
UNSWEETENED COCOA POWDER
Make the caramel:
In a small heavy saucepan, combine the sugar and water. Bring to a boil over
medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Then continue to boil,
without stirring, 4 to 5 minutes longer, or until the syrup caramelizes and
turns a deep amber in color.
Immediately remove the syrup from the heat and add the cream. (The mixture
will bubble up). Using a wooden spoon, stir until completely smooth; if
necessary, briefly return the caramel to low heat and stir until smooth.
Scrape into a small bowl and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until
well chilled, at least 2 hours.
Make the ganache:
Place the chocolate in a food processor fitted with the metal blade and
process until finely chopped. In a small saucepan, over medium heat, bring the cream to a gentle boil. With the motor of the food processor running, pour the cream through the feed tube. Process for 10 to 15 seconds, until the chocolate is completely melted. Using a spatula, scrape down the side of the work bowl.
Add the butter and vanilla and process for about 5 seconds, or until the
mixture is smooth and creamy. Scrape the ganache into a medium bowl. Cover
with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm enough to pipe, about 1 hour.
Make the caramel centers:
Line a small baking sheet with waxed paper. Using a 1/4-teaspoon measuring
spoon dipped in cold water, scoop out level spoonfuls of the caramel and place about 1 inch apart on the baking sheet. Freeze until firm, at least 30
Form the truffles:
Transfer the chilled ganache to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain tip
(such as Ateco #6). Pipe 1 1/4-inch mounds with pointed peaks onto a clean
baking sheet. Refrigerate or freeze the truffles for 10 to 20 minutes, or
until just firm enough to roll.
Sift a light dusting of confectioners' sugar over the chilled truffles.
Lightly coat the palms and fingertips of your hands with confectioners' sugar. With your fingertips, pinch a truffle into a round, then roll it gently
between your palms into a slightly irregularly shaped 1 1/4 inch ball. Place
the rolled truffle on the baking sheet, and form the remaining truffles into
rounds. Refrigerate the truffles for about 10 minutes, just until firm.
Remove the rolled truffles from the refrigerator. Remove 5 or 6 of the
caramel centers from the freezer and place on a cold plate. Working quickly,
with your fingertips, pinch a caramel center into a small ball.
With the tip of your index finger, make an indentation about 2/3 of the way
through the center of a chocolate truffle. Insert the caramel center in the
truffle and, with your fingertips, mold the chocolate over the caramel,
covering it completely. Place on a baking sheet and repeat the procedure with
the remaining chocolate truffles and caramel centers. Refrigerate until firm,
at least 30 minutes.
Roll half the chocolate truffles in sifted confectioners' sugar to coat.
Roll the remaining truffles in sifted cocoa powder to coat. Store the truffles for up to 5 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before serving.
- Judith Sutton firstname.lastname@example.org