I’m always looking for unique food gifts to give. For at least the last 5 years I’ve tried to focus on giving people experiences or consumable items rather than STUFF (with the exception of books). I’ve been baking bread for years for Christmas and Easter, and I’ve made fun things like chocolate spoons for coffee, hot chocolate mix, and soup mix in a jar.
My mom subscribes to Prevention Magazine and passes it on to me when she’s done with it. I have saved a few recipes, mostly for salads and smoothies. These truffles looked so beautiful in the picture I just had to try them. With only 4 ingredients (3 of which I already had in the house), they were easy yet impressive (from the September 2 issue).
Total Time: 35 minutes + cooling time
Makes: 3 dozen
2 to 3 c water
3 c dark chocolate chips
½ c heavy cream, room-temperature
⅓ c crushed pistachios
1 Tbsp matcha powder or ground green tea leaves
1. In saucepan, bring water to a simmer. Place heatproof glass or stainless-steel bowl over saucepan.
2. Add chocolate chips and heavy cream. Use spatula to mix well as chocolate melts.
3. Remove bowl from heat and transfer mixture to parchment-lined loaf pan or shallow bowl.
4. Cool completely, then chill 90 minutes to solidify. Using melon baller or hands, mold mixture into 1″ balls.
5. Place pistachios in bowl. Roll truffles in nuts, pressing gently.
6. Using fine mesh strainer or sifter, dust truffles with matcha powder or ground green tea leaves.
7. Store in paper liners or parchmentlined tin and refrigerate until ready to serve.
NUTRITION (per truffle) 115 cal, 2 g pro, 11 g carb, 2 g fiber, 8 g sugars, 8.5 g fat, 5 g sat fat, 3 mg sodium
I put these together a couple of days before Christmas. We had 2 and a half giant bars of Hershey’s Special Dark chocolate, which left us just shy of 3 cups after chopping. I grabbed a couple of 1 oz dark chocolate bars my friend just gave us from her Native American Casino Anniversary and added those to the mix. Since I have no patience for a double boiler, I put the chopped chocolate into a glass bowl and used the microwave (30 seconds at a time, stirring after each interval). I stirred in the cream until it was nice and smooth, then poured it in a parchment lined loaf pan and put it in the fridge.
I ended up leaving the chocolate mixture cooling overnight, which was way too long. When I got around to forming the candy balls, I had to let the chocolate sit out for a little while (okay, at least an hour) before it was malleable enough to shape. I wore food service gloves to roll the truffles, just to keep the equivalent of an entire truffle from sticking to my palms. The pistachio rolling went off without a hitch, though I did almost run out of the crunchy pieces. After smelling the matcha powder, I realized it was much too strong to use an entire tablespoon. I probably used the equivalent of a teaspoon, and the truffles were just perfect. DO NOT LICK THE MATCHA POWDER OFF THE TRUFFLES! It is completely disgusting and only works as part of the bite. The crunch and salt of the pistachios offsets the rich gooey chocolate perfectly, but the grassy matcha does not stand well alone. Trust me.
So, at 115 calories per bite, these aren’t exactly diet truffles. They do boast antioxidant properties and are at least natural. One is a perfect serving. They are so rich you really wouldn’t want to eat more than that (well, you might want to, but I wouldn’t recommend it). I gave these to family for Christmas and the decadent balls received rave reviews (as well as some Schweddy comments). I would definitely make them again, and would try rolling in almonds, pecans, or walnuts and dusting with cinnamon or ginger. I might even try curry powder, but I’m kind of weird that way.