Making truffles is another of my fond childhood memories. It was a serious matter in my house and the whole ritual was very messy! Of course, Cointreau was off limits for me when I was little, but boozy truffles are always very welcome among grown-ups. With a little organisation you can make truffles with your kids – and have great fun too – using orange juice in place of the Cointreau, or leaving them plain. They work well as an edible gift for friends and family, presented in small paper cases, in a fancy box wrapped with an elegant ribbon. Et voilà!
Note: Substitute coffee or your favourite liqueur instead of Cointreau. Use milk chocolate, if preferred.
Time: 20 minutes plus 2 hours refrigeration
225g good-quality dark chocolate
115ml double cream
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons Cointreau liqueur
good-quality cocoa powder, for coating
Finely grate the chocolate using a cheese grater, or chop it very finely, and put it in a large heatproof bowl. Set aside.
Bring the cream to a gentle boil in a saucepan set over a medium heat, then pour it over the chocolate. Leave to stand for 1 minute then gently start stirring, using a metal spoon. Add the butter and stir a little more, making sure the chocolate is completely melted. Finally, add the Cointreau and stir to combine. Cover the bowl with cling film (plastic wrap) and refrigerate for at least a couple of hours or, better still, overnight.
Using a teaspoon or a small scoop, form the mixture into small balls. Making sure your hands are cool (if not, wash in cold water and dry well), roll each ball in the sifted cocoa powder.
Shake the excess cocoa gently from each and place the truffles on a sheet of baking parchment to set. Leave to stand at room temperature until completely solid. In warm weather, store them in the fridge until ready to serve.
Recipe taken from The Italian Baker, by Melissa Forti
Melissa Forti is the Italian baker. In her tea room in an idyllic medieval town near Tuscany, she bakes beautiful cakes that combine Italian traditions with her own modern twists. This book is a collection of Melissa's favourite tarts, celebration cakes, loaves, biscuits and coffee-time treats borne out of her unique style of baking. Every cake and cookie tells a story, reflecting Melissa's travels, her passion for good food and love of her Italian heritage.
You can purchase The Italian Baker at cooked.com.
Published by Hardie Grant
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