Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Chocolate Brandy Truffles

A couple of weeks ago I saw a truffle mania challenge that Heavenly Housewife was participating in. (Check out all the awesome entries at the bottom of this post.) I thought that the basic recipe looked simple enough and that these would make great "thank you"s to my coworkers who donated to my Great Strides campaign for Cystic Fibrosis research.

I've never made truffles before and I was excited to see that a basic recipe looked easy. I was even feeling very inventive because I decided to use brandy instead of grand marnier in the mixture.

The starting steps turned out lovely. The chocolate mixture from the first step looked great.
And I only made a SLIGHT mess with the first couple of steps. I was feeling very good about this whole thing.
What I hadn't planned for was heat and humidity. The second to last step involved shaping the chilled chocolate into ball shapes.
Yeah. Need I say more? This weekend was HOT and HUMID (and kinda miserable). And no, I don't have an AC in the kitchen. Thus the mess.

I decided to put the chocolate in the freezer and deal with it at night when it would be slightly cooler.

I left my apartment and headed outside. A Memorial Day street fair greeted me on my way to the subway.
I put my truffle worries behind me as I traveled to Hoboken, NJ to relax with friends and eat BBQ. I also flew a kite.
I headed back to NYC where my truffles were patiently awaiting me.
The shaping and forming of the truffles at night was a success! I can't wait to try truffles again in the fall/winter. Or year round if I ever move to Alaska.
Chocolate Brandy Truffles (adapted from the Food Network)
1/2 pound good bittersweet chocolate
1/2 pound good semisweet chocolate
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons brandy
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cocoa powder

Chop the chocolates finely with a sharp knife. Place them in a heat-proof mixing bowl. (Erika's Extra: I used Ghiradelli chocolate chips which I didn't chop.)

Heat the cream in a small saucepan until it just boils. Turn off the heat and allow the cream to sit for 20 seconds. Pour the cream through a fine-meshed sieve into the bowl with chocolate. With a wire whisk, slowly stir the cream and chocolates together until the chocolate is completely melted. Whisk in the brandy and vanilla. Set aside at room temperature for 1 hour. (Erika's Extra: I had to set aside in my bedroom with the AC on.)

With 2 teaspoons, spoon round balls of the chocolate mixture onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, until firm. Roll each dollop of chocolate in your hands to roughly make a round ball. Roll in cocoa powder. These will keep refrigerated for weeks, but serve at room temperature.
Check out the other bloggers to see how successful they were in the truffle mania challenge:

Heavenly Housewife - Donuts to Delirium

Stevie - Weird Combinations

Joumana - Taste of Beirut

Shelly - Franish Nonspeaker

Karen - Gourmet Food

Su - Suvelle Cuisine

The Baking Addict - The More than Occasional Baker
Bake well and prosper!


  1. Oh gosh, you poor thing, you looked so unhappy in the humidity. Thank goodness for sailors and ice cream ;). Anyways, your truffles did turn out beautifully :). I guess it was easy for me because summer seems like a far away promise here in england.
    Thanks for participating daaaaaahling, you rock :D
    *kisses* HH

  2. I was in New York last week, too, so know what you mean about the humidity. From rainy cold to hot literally overnight! Glad to be safely back on the cool West Coast.

    Your truffles look good, despite the lack of cooperation by pesky Mother Nature.

  3. I can feel the heat and humidity from here but the truffles look great! I used gloves to make mine to reduce body heat and mess :)

  4. I envy you to be able to roam around my favorite city in the world! these truffles look delicious esp with that touch of liqueur!

  5. hehe what a sticky mess! glad that they turned out soo beautifully at the end! stay cool in the humid/hot weather!

  6. I laughed seeing you and your chocolaty hands in one of your photo. I missed summer...as we are getting the chills at downunder.

    These truffles are so lovely. I wish that I can have one :D

  7. Your truffles look fantastic!! Love the addition of brandy. I think we all should get our hands full of chocolate more often! :-) Looking forward to following your blog.

  8. Thanks for commenting! Update: NYC just got a little cooler. Humidity was almost gone this morning. Whew! I still think I'll stick to Fall/Winter to make truffles from now on. :)

  9. Wow- you are brave to attempt truffles in an un-airconditioned kitchen. They turned out beautifully! I had a hard enough time in my A/Ced kitchen in TX.

  10. Mmm these sound and look great -- love the addition of brandy =D

  11. Thank the heavens above for the break in the weather... my poor St.Bernard was melting like your chocolate... very large unhappy camper.

    The truffles look awesome and I LOVE your picture with the chocolate hands... it's a keeper and resonates since we have all been there at one time or another!!

  12. I know a thing or two about a chocolatey mess - yours looks like it turned out delicious!

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Thanks for taking time to leave a message! xo - EB