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Dec 5, 2009 03:47 PM

Recommendations for chocolate truffles?

I'm thinking about making chocolate truffles for the first time. Doesn't look too difficult and I have a couple of good recipes. I'd like to use as good ingredients as possible. Does anyone have any suggestions for a really good chocolate to use and a type of cocoa to roll them in? Was thinking of using Callebaut bittersweet. Not sure about the cocoa. Sources? Thanks.

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  1. I'd say use the most expensive bar chocolate you'd spring for as a splurge. Or the "splurgy" cooking chocolate you nosh on before using. Vahlrona? Merkens? El Rey?
    I'd use any good dutched plain cocoa--Green and Black, Droste, Scharfenberger, etc.

    Find really good cream--the fresher the better, and non-ultra homogenized. Trader Joes and Alta Dena do a nice heavy cream w/o additves and stabilizers.

    For some chocolate/decorating/flavoring ideas visit the Chocolate God of Nevada City:

    1. Are these chocolates for you or will you be giving them as gifts?

      Although one would think that adding cream to chocolate would make it milkier tasting/less intense, in my experience, ganaches seem to be more intensely flavored than the chocolates that they are made with. Perhaps it's the fact that the cocoa butter has lost it's temper and is giving off all the chocolate flavor right away rather than after it's melted. I'm not sure.

      Bottom line, if you like dark chocolate, use dark chocolate, but don't go with too high of a cocoa content. If you're giving these as gifts, I might back off a bit more for the potential milk chocolate lovers you might come across.

      Whatever cocoa you use, I recommend cutting it with a little powdered sugar.

      1 Reply
      1. re: scott123

        Good advice about the cocoa mass percentage. 54% (semi) to 63% (bitter) is a good range that most tastes will enjoy.

        "in my experience, ganaches seem to be more intensely flavored than the chocolates that they are made with." It is probably the addition of a little liquor that heightens the flavor.*-*

      2. I don't think there are any truffles better than Alice Medrich's.
        They're also very easy because she skips tempering for the smooth instant melt of untempered chocolate held in the fridge.

        As for chocolate, you can't beat the price/quality combo of Trader Joe's Pound Plus bars.

        When I'm not doing Alice Medrich's truffles I like Sherry Yard's Caramel Ganache which adds the complexity of caramelized sugar.

        1. Are you going to roll the ganache into balls and roll into cocoa for the truffles, or are you planning on dipping into chocolate first? If it's the former, it'll be pretty easy. If it's the latter, tempering the chocolate and maintaining it while dipping is a little trickier.

          While Callebaut is excellent, if you're planning on making a large amount, as rainey said, TJ's Pound Plus bars are a much better value. For dipping into cocoa, since you won't need that much, you could splurge and buy Valrhona. I buy mine locally but you can order it:

          2 Replies
          1. re: chowser

            Thanks for all the suggestions so far. I'll probably make a modest quantity; some to keep, some to give as gifts. Will roll in cocoa. Would like to experiment with the ganache-add some flavorings (probably a little flavored liquors). Also have a nice recipe for goat cheese/chocolate truffles-can get some really good fresh locally made chevre.

            1. re: chowser

              Check out Alice Medrich's recipe at my link above. She dips her frozen ganache centers into chocolate that is not tempered. These have to be stored in the fridge or freezer to avoid blooming. And you want to pop one in your mouth without holding it long because they melt instantaneously. This makes them messy on hot skin but an instant thrill in the mouth. And the latter is the reason why she *chooses* not to temper and became one of the pioneer of chocolatiers in America.

            2. I've made different recipes for fundraisers and liked Nick Malgieri's best. Creamy inside, firm on the outside and then rolled in cocoa. Or nuts. Interiors can be flavored how you like.