In my book nothing says “I love you” quite like a homemade gift. I remember a couple years ago for Valentine’s day my hubby was hiding out downstairs for a couple hours, which is not unusual as his PC and our home office is down there, but it was a weekend…my hubby doesn’t work weekends. Well, 2 hours later he emerges from the dungeon and presents to me an origami (paper folded) flower. He fought the good fight, folding and unfolding for 2+ hours to create a gift of lasting beauty for me and it is one of my most treasured gifts ever.
With Valentine’s day right around the corner it is the perfect time to flex some of your “homemade” muscles. When it comes to edibles homemade is usually more cost effective and just as tasty, if not tastier, then the store-bought version. Honestly, though a little messy, TRUFFLES ARE SO SIMPLE TO MAKE IT’S SILLY. That’s right…those decadent orbs of delight that people pay a small fortune for can be easily be made at home and the flavor combinations are endless! Don’t stress over making them look like perfect little balls either, in this area the uglier the better. After all, they call that “character” and “personality”, right??
Here are the supplies you’ll need:
- mini muffin cups (baking aisle of grocery store)
- decorative or plain boxes (or cello bags) and some decorative ribbon (check your local fabric and craft stores for these)
- sheet of wax paper or parchment paper
- large bowl
- heavy sauce pan
- small cookie scoop, melon baller, or teaspoon
Easy Truffles recipe (makes approx. 24 1-inch truffles):
- 8 oz of good quality chocolate, chopped into small pieces (depending on your taste it can be dark, bittersweet, semi-sweet, milk or a combination to equal 8 oz.)
- 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
- A generous Tablespoon of unsalted butter
- 2 Tbls of liquor (like kaluha, rum, baileys, bourbon) OR 1 teaspoon of your favorite extract (like rum, mint, raspberry, coconut, almond, vanilla)
- pick some favorite coatings: toasted coconut, roughly ground up or chopped nuts, candy bits, cocoa powder mixed with powdered sugar (equal amounts of both mixed together), sprinkles, crushed cookies or pretzels, etc…
- Place the chopped chocolate in the large bowl and set aside.
- In the saucepan heat the cream and butter over medium heat, until just simmering. Turn the heat off then add in the chocolate.
- Whisk the chocolate and cream mixture until completely smooth. Add in the alcohol or extract, mix well, cover and chill for a couple hours.
- While truffle mixture is chilling prepare your coatings, try a couple different ones to get a nice variety.
- Once truffle mixture is firm enough to handle, scoop out balls approx the size of 1 inch around and quickly shape with hands then place on the wax paper.
- As soon as you are done balling out the truffles, immediately roll them into your desired topping and re-chill for 30 minutes.
- They are now ready to be packaged up! Place a truffle into each mini muffin cup and then into the candy boxes (or other desired packaging) and wrap with a pretty bow.
- Serve chilled. These will keep in the fridge for 2-3 weeks.
- Don’t worry if the mix starts to get a little soft before you are done balling them all out, just stick them back in the fridge for a little bit.
- Play with the amount of extracts and alcohol until it is to you liking, just taste a little right after adding them into the warm mixture.