Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Delightful and Decadent Seasonal Truffles: Basil & Dark Chocolate Truffle Recipe

The basil has been growing in abundance in the back garden all month long and I have been inspired.  My first introduction to basil in chocolate by Hello Cocoa last month was the first inspiration, and then the fact that it was growing everywhere, I just couldn't help myself. I had to make basil-favoured chocolate truffles!



So get outside and pick the last of your basil now before it goes to seed, because this is your chance to make something absolutely delectable! These truffles are both bitter and sweet, a little sweet and savoury, and sooooo creamy.

My recipe is a modification of Alice Medrich's mint truffles from her first book, 'Bitterweet'. I found the basil to have a milder taste in the resulting truffles, so instead of loosely packing the leaves, pack them in tight to your 1 cup measure to maximize flavour.

I also made a second version of these, rolled into balls and dipped in dark chocolate, and immediately rolled in sesame seeds. The crunch was delicious! This is also a great way to cover up any chocolate-dipping imperfections, in case you are new to working with chocolate.

Basil chocolate truffles rolled in sesame seeds.


Basil & Sesame Dark Chocolate Truffles Recipe


Plan ahead: Remember to start two days in advance of when you want to make the truffles!

Ingredients:
  • 20 ounce (567g) semi-sweet dark chocolate (I used 56% Camino couverture chocolate, with just three ingredients of cacao, cocoa butter and organic sugar)
  • 360 ml (1.5 cups) whipping cream
  • 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • 20 ounces (567g) dark chocolate (I used 70% organic/FT couverture chocolate) for dipping
  • Dried basil for decoration
  • Light sesame seeds for decoration or rolling
Instructions:
  1. Two days in advance: pick your basil, measure to 1 packed cup, then soak in the cream in a small saucepan with a lid. Warm this on the stove and bring to a near-boil. Let cool then refrigerate covered for 24 hour to let steep.
  2. After 24 hours, remove from the fridge. Heat on stovetop at medium temperature.
  3. Chop the chocolate into 1/2" pieces and place in a heat-proof, medium-sized bowl.
  4. When the cream comes just to a boil, remove from heat and pour over the chocolate in a circular motion to ensure you touch all the chocolate in the bowl.
  5. Stir with a clean wooden spoon slowly in a circular motion until all the chocolate is entirely melted and smooth with no chunks or smalls solid bits left. Try to keep your spoon touching the bottom of the bowl the entire time you are stirring, to prevent excessive air bubbles. Set aside for a moment while you prepare your frame.
  6. Pour into a small chocolate frame (about 8" x 8"), or a plastic-wrap lined small box (like a shoebox or anything rectangular like a loaf pan about 9" by 4". If you just want to roll truffles, and not make square shapes, just pour into a bowl.
  7. Cover the frame, box or bowl and set aside until set (usually 8 hours or overnight, when resting at a room temperature of not more than 21ºC or 22º C.
  8. Once set, begin melting your dipping chocolate in a double boiler (do not let even one drop of water touch the chocolate!). Temper the chocolate following the instructions at this link: http://ultimatechocolateblog.blogspot.ca/2014/04/there-is-more-than-one-method-to-temper.html.
  9. Cut your set truffle into 3/4" squares using a sharp, long knife. Or roll into 3/4" balls between the palms of gloved hands (kitchen gloves will help prevent your body heat from melting the chocolate, and it is more hygienic).
  10. On a fork or chocolate-dipping fork, dip into the melted and tempered chocolate, let excess drip off and then set gently onto waxed paper. Sprinkle a little dried basil or sesame seeds on the corner of the squares or top of truffle balls, or roll entirely into sesame and dried basil. Let set on waxed paper for 30 minutes or so and place in mini cupcake papers or candy papers.
  11. Consume within 10 days or to freeze: place in a container with an airtight lid and freeze for up to 6 months. Let come to room temperature before you open the container to serve.
Feel free to try this recipe with any other herb or mint leaves for fun flavour combinations.

Enjoy!

5 comments:

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  2. Love chocolate truffles and this looks like a great recipe.

    Can you use a non-dairy alternative?

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