In my mind home is the place where the door is always open the wine rack is filled and there are plates with nibbles in the fridge. There are friends spontaneously stopping by and the house is filled with real laughter, conversations and loads of eye contact.
Also, just to be a little more practical, I’d like to stretch the idea of wine rack with a variety of concoctions such as Homemade Gin, Cinnamon-Vanilla-Orange Liqueur, Coffee Liqueur, Limoncello and Kumquat-Cinnamon Liqueur.
The plates with nibbles would be anything that is tempting to bite into and not so filling that it feels like a real meal. And no cutlery is needed (we are talking about an ideal world, obviously).
These truffles really fit into this picture, in my view at least. They are amazing to have in your fridge, and even though they take some effort and patience (only in the finishing, ball-rolling phase though), I think it really pays off as it makes such a brilliant amount of it. Chocolate Truffles with dried Cranberries, Chili & Sea Salt
Adapted from this Food52 Recipe, makes approximately 40 pieces.
- 500 gram of dark chocolate (I used 72% cacao), broken into pieces (for example by smashing the closed packages on your counter top – very meditative)
- 300 gram of cream (I used 25% fat)
- 50 grams of dried cranberries, very finely chopped
- 50 milliliter of Coffee Liqueur (or Vanilla Essence)
- 1 teaspoon of sea salt
- ½ teaspoon of chili powder (I used a rather mild one and wished I’d have used a little more, just be sure to test how spicy yours is, and adjust to taste)
- 70 grams of butter
- 100 grams of cacao (to roll the balls in, this amount is way too much to use up, but it is a good idea to use this much as it will make it way easier to form the truffles. My advice is to save all that is left over in a mason jar – maybe even make this mix, so that you have hot cacao on the go).
Heat the cream in either a pan on the stove or in a bowl in the microwave until it is boiling hot. Take it off the gas or out of the microwave.
Mix the chocolate pieces in and let it simply sit for around 30 seconds. As we are not heating the chocolate itself, we are keeping the texture smoother and we are reducing the risk that the chocolate will split (or burn).
Take a spatula and start mixing all together. If all goes alright, you will notice that the chocolate is melting very fast. Once the chocolate is visibly melted into the cream, mix in all the other, cold ingredient, except the cacao.
The mixture will look smooth, tasty and glossy. Leave the bowl in the fridge to stiffen up.
After approximately three to four hours, the mixture will have set. This is when you can start forming the truffles, by either taking a small ice cream scoop or teaspoons to form little blubs out of the mixture.
Pour the cacao powder into a deep plate and simply drop the little balls into it.
I have used a normal ice scoop and have divided the outcome of this into four smaller ones, after I dropped the larger shape into the cacao.
After you have dropped a fairly large amount in the cacao powder, roll the truffles with your hands until they look round enough to your taste. I’ve found that these truffles hold up very well, even in the sun on our terrace. Which makes them really good as party bites. 😉