Friday, 11 February 2011

chocolate covered love notes

while I was playing with melted chocolate to make these chilli chocolate hearts I decided to roll up some truffles. Truffles are so much simpler than you would think, the centre is just a ganache of melted chocolate and cream. I melt the chocolate and mix with cream, the French who boil the cream and pour over chopped chocolate would probably tell me off for this, but I find it is easier to burn cream than chocolate. Once it's suitably mixed and silky you can add your flavourings. Literally anything can be used as a filling, I have even seen olive oil and rosemary truffles! I would suggest coffee, vanilla, champagne, earl grey or rosewater but don't be limited by my imagination. The only rule is not a drop out water or alcohol should touch your chocolate until your cream is thoroughly mixed. Your chocolate will seize and be virtually unusable (tip: I have read that stirring in a tbsp of veg oil over a tiny heat can help but I haven't tried it myself).

After you've done the mixing part you need to chill your chocolate for at least two hours, you want it to be set quite firm, but moldable enough to roll with your hands. Which is what you need to do one the chilling part is over. PInch out walnut sized pieces and roll into balls. Then drop onto a cocoa dusted plate and roll around - you can also use icing sugar to make white truffles. At this stage I often finish up the bowl and leave it at that, but if you want extra fancy chocolates you will need more melted chocolate for dipping in. This gives you a smooth and hard outer shell, with the gooey ganache inside. And if you're super duper fancy like me you would use a swirly pattern chocolate mold, though I probably won't both with that again (too hard to remove the chocs and too long to clean afterwards). I do love a little white chocolate drizzling though. You can go wild with this bit too, chopped chilli, crushed nuts, lustre dust, coloured sugar, sprinkles...

I was inspired by these Martha Stewart chocolates to leave little love notes under my sweet treats, I don't know if it's because I am swept up with v-day love but I think this would be an amazing way to pop the question ('he asked me with chocolates, how could I say no?')

So are you sick of Valentines yet friends? I promise next week I will have some none gushy stuff to share. I might even have some monster trucks.

Blue Skies,
Charlotte xo

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