When I saw a recipe for chocolate truffles in a Ghirardelli ad a few years back, I couldn’t believe how very few steps were involved. I love chocolate, especially dark, so I tried it.
Very easy, indeed. Melt some chocolate chips with butter and cream, refrigerate for 2 hours, shape the truffles, roll them in cocoa and voilá: handmade, soft and creamy, bittersweet delights to die for.
A couple of months ago I had a craving for chocolate and chili peppers, a combination that I have tried and enjoyed before. I doubted I could find a chocolate bar with chilies in my local grocery so I thought I might be able to make it myself using that basic truffle recipe I had.
Cayenne was going to give the bite, but I felt like I needed a richer flavor. Another truffle recipe suggested orange peels. Cinnamon is also often found in this Mexican style chocolate but I was looking for something less ubiquitous and overpowering. I have been experimenting with cardamom lately and it felt just right for this. Well, that should do it.
And it did it, in fact. Rich dark chocolate with a perfect balance of spice, sweet fragrance and citrus tang. A pure indulgence in a few very simple steps.
Spicy Chocolate Truffles
Makes 30 truffles
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 2 cups Bittersweet Chocolate Chips (60% cocoa or more)
- 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (if you like more bite feel free to increase the amount)
- ½ tablespoon ground cardamom
- ½ tablespoon orange peels
- 1 pinch of salt
In a small saucepan bring the cream to a simmer. Add the butter and stir until melted. Add the chocolate chips. Stir until completely melted and smooth. Stir in cayenne, cardamom, orange peels and salt. Remove from the heat and pour into a shallow bowl.
Cool, cover and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours.
Using a melon baller or small spoon, roll mixture into 1-inch balls. Roll each ball in cocoa or nuts. Enjoy!
The truffles are best kept refrigerated in an air tight container.
This is what I am making for Valentine’s Day. What about you?