Chocolate Truffles

Until now, I have avoided chocolate confections. But seriously these are so easy it would be mean not to make them for your Valentine or your coworkers or yourself for next Monday’s episode of The Bachelor. All you need is a microwave (and if you don’t have one check your office break room or 7-11, there’s always a microwave to use somewhere).

Chocolate Truffles (Credit Alton Brown’s crazyface)

  • 10 oz bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 3 Tbs unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1 Tbs light corn syrup
  • 1/2  cup Hershey’s cocoa powder, or powdered sugar, or both
  • 8 oz semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
  • Optional syrup to flavor chocolate (like raspberry or peppermint, or irish cream)
  • Optional toppings like nuts or white chocolate, sprinkles who cares

Preparation

1. Place 10 oz of chocolate chips and the butter into a microwave safe bowl and nuke for 30 seconds, stir, and repeat once more.

2. Heat the cream and corn syrup in the microwave for 30 seconds. Stir and pour it over just melted chocolate. Let this sit for 5 minutes without stirring, then, when you can’t take it any longer, stir until the cream and the chocolate combine.

3. Pour the chocolate onto a flat dish like a plate or baking pan. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

4.Just before taking the chocolate out of the fridge, heat the remaining chocolate chips in the microwave in thirty second increments until it has melted. Stir in syrups, if you have any. Arrange the powdered sugar or cocoa powder on plates near the melted chocolate. Save a space to set the truffles once they have been coated and dusted.

I put some superfine espresso grounds in the cocoa powder on the left to make some mocha truffles. I highly recommend this.

5. Take the cooled chocolate out of the fridge and use a melon baller or circular teaspoon measure (really just whatever you’ve got lying around) to scoop the chocolate into bite-sized balls. Don’t worry if it’s not perfectly round, its chocolate so it won’t matter.

6. Drop the chocolate ball into the melted chocolate, and push it around with a spoon to coat it completely. Toss the chocolate in the powdered topping of your choice and set it aside to cool.

Eat them all right away. Refrigerate them and eat them later. Put them in fancy-schmancy box. Share them with someone you love.

Advertisements

Chocolate Covered Bacon

5 ingredients, (about) 15 minutes and 0 need for explanation. And if you’re still on the fence, consider the facts: not every chocolate covered something makes it on the Wikipedia.

Here’s all you need (amounts vary and the last three are optional):

  • Bacon – Preferably thick cut, and not covered in pepper
  • Semisweet chocolate chips or baking chocolate squares
  • Chopped pecans
  • Maple syrup
  • Wood smoked salt (for the Texans, available in the bulk section of HEB or Central Market)

If you’re not into pecans, wood smoked salt, or maple syrup, then feel free to proceed without. Alternately, you could try a different nut – perhaps slivered almonds – or extracts in the melted chocolate to add some flavor.

Preparation:

1. Cook bacon to desired crispness in either the microwave or by baking it in the oven (I would avoid skillet cooking because the bacon tends to end up too greasy.) For a chewier, more elastic product, cook the bacon less and for a more smoky, crispy end result cook the bacon longer. Pat the grease off the bacon and let it cool.

2. Melt the chocolate slowly over low heat. If you use the microwave make sure that you dial in a low power setting or your chocolate will end up strangely crumbly and scorched (oops). I prefer to use a double boiler on the stovetop since you can control the temperature.

No need to buy a double boiler, simply place a heatproof bowl (filled with chocolate) in a saucepan filled with a few inches of water. Set burner to low heat, and stir chocolate frequently until melted. If the water begins to boil, lower the temperature.

3. Optional. Toss pecans in maple syrup. Toast in foil lined pan for a few minutes at 350 degrees.

4. Spoon the tempered chocolate on the cooled bacon strips. Top with pecans and sprinkle with wood smoked salt.

Store in the refrigerator for up to a week or wrapped in the freezer for up to a month.