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La Belle Cuisine
Emeril's Creole Christmas
by Emeril Lagasse with Marcelle Bienvenu,
Morrow and Co., Inc.
cups heavy cream
2 pounds semisweet chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup Grand Marnier or other orange-
flavored liqueur (optional)
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup granulated sugar
a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat the cream over medium heat
just begins to simmer, about 5 minutes. Add the chocolate. With a wooden
spoon, stir until the chocolate melts and the mixture is smooth,
minutes. Add the butter and stir to melt completely.
you wish to flavor the mixture, add the Grand Marnier at this point
Line a baking pan with parchment or
waxed paper. Pour the chocolate
into the pan, spreading it evenly with a
wooden spoon. Let it cool
completely, then refrigerate until it sets.
the chocolate from the parchment paper, break it into pieces,
and put it
in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a wire whisk. Beat
speed for 1 minute, then increase the speed to medium and beat
until it is
creamy and smooth, 2 to 3 minutes.
the mixture to a pastry bag without a tip. Pipe out 1/2-ouince
each about the size of a walnut, onto a sheet of parchment or
the cocoa powder and sugar in a shallow bowl. Using two forks,
truffles in the mixture, coating them evenly. Transfer to a sheet of
parchment paper and leave to harden at room temperature or refrigerate.
Store the truffles between layers of parchment paper in an airtight
tainer. Will keep up to 1 week.
An alternative is to dip the truffles in melted chocolate. After piping
out the truffles, refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Use dipping chocolate
(called couverture), which is available in bittersweet, semisweet, white,
chocolate varieties in specialty food shops. It melts easily and
smoothly. If you
plan to dip all of the truffles, you will need about 2
pounds of chocolate, but
if you want to do only two or three dozen, you
will need about a pound. Work
in a cool, dry room. Melt the chocolate in a
stainless steel bowl set over
simmering water. Use a four-prong fork to
dip, then tip the truffles onto a
sheet of parchment paper by turning the
fork upside down. Avoid touching
the dipped candies while they set.
Chocolate is shinier if allowed to cool at
room temperature. Refrigerate
the candies only if the chocolate has not set
after 15 minutes. After they
set, put them in paper candy cups and store
between sheets of parchment
Chocolate Mint Truffles
Maida Heatter's Book of
Great Chocolate Desserts
by Maida Heatter, 1995, Random House
are dense, bittersweet chocolate candies flavored with mint. Shaped
resemble natural truffles. They are easy fun to prepare and should be
least a day before serving. Many truffle candies must be refrigerated
serving – these must not. They are served at room temperature.
served as dessert, with dessert, after dessert, or between
especially good after dinner with espresso and/or
ounces semisweet chocolate (see Notes)
2 ounces (1/2 stick) sweet [unsalted] butter,
cut into small bits
2 egg yolks
Approximately 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
Unsweetened cocoa powder (preferably Dutch process)
Approximately 2 ounces additional semisweet chocolate
(for coating the
or chop the chocolate into medium-size pieces. Place it in the top
small double boiler over hot water on low heat. Cover and let stand
partially melted. Uncover and stir until completely melted.
the top of the double boiler temporarily. Add the butter, a few
a time, and stir with a small wire whisk after each addition
a small bowl stir a bit of the chocolate into the yolks and then stir
yolks into the chocolate.
over the hot water on low heat and stir gently with a rubber
about 2 minutes.
remove the top of the double boiler. Stir in the peppermint extract,
adding just a few drops at a time. Taste it – make it as minty as you
(I make it strong), but add it slowly and taste it carefully. Some
extracts taste unpleasant if you use too much.
the top of the double boiler in a bowl of ice and water. Stir con-
with a small wooden spatula until the mixture is firm enough
a piece of wax paper in front of you. Use a slightly rounded tea-
of the mixture for each truffle. Place them in mounds on the
forming 20 mounds.
the mixture is firm enough, the truffles may be rolled into shape
immediately. But is it is too soft, let it stand uncovered at room
temperature for about half an hour or until firm enough to handle.
out two more large pieces of wax paper. Onto one, strain a
of unsweetened cocoa. Coat the palms of your
hands well with
up a mound of the chocolate mixture, roll it between your
to form an
uneven ball (real truffles are very uneven), then
roll it around
cocoa and place it on the other piece of wax
paper. Continue to
of the truffles, coating your hands
with cocoa before shaping
the truffles stand overnight at room temperature, uncovered
covered, so the outsides dry a bit.
2 ounces of additional chocolate must be ground to a fine powder;
be done with a food processor, a blender, a nut grinder, or on a
metal grater. Spread the ground chocolate on wax paper and roll
truffles around in it to coat them again.
are best when they are very fresh, before they dry out too much
they are still creamy soft in the centers. They may be kept at
temperature for a day or two but they should be refrigerated or
longer storage. (Bring them back to room temperature
1. The flavor of
the chocolate is very important in these candies –
use a delicious one.
I especially like Barton’s Bittersweet, Tobler
Tradition, or Lindt
Excellence – they are all bittersweet. Or you
can use Baker’s Semisweet, Baker’s German Sweet, Maillard’s
Eagle Sweet, etc.
2. The truffles
may be placed in little fluted paper candy cases.
Truffle variations are endless.
Here are just a few. To make plain chocolate truffles simply omit
the mint. Then, if you wish, vary some by adding ground or very finely
chopped nuts (toasted hazelnuts are special) or chopped shredded coconut.
Or rum-soaked raisins or dates, or cut up soft, dried apricots.
diced candied (or drained preserved) ginger. Or chopped candied
And/or a teaspoon or two of rum, Cognac, bourbon, Grand Marnier, Amaretto,
whiskey, etc. For a coffee flavor add coffee extract… Or roll the
truffles in very finely chopped nuts or coconut in place of the cocoa
ground chocolate. Etcetera.
White Chocolate Truffles
The Christmas Season
From the Editors of Bon Appétit, 2000,
Condé Nast Books,
the truffles in paper or silver-foil candy cups,
and offer them in
wrapped in clear cellophane
and tied with raffia and pinecones.
If you prefer, coat
the truffles in 12 ounces of melted bittersweet choco-
instead of white chocolate.”
ounces good-quality white chocolate
(such as Lindt or
5 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1 tablespoon ground espresso beans
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup crème fraîche or sour cream
1 tablespoon whipping cream
1 tablespoon coffee liqueur
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
24 candied violets or whole espresso beans
12 ounces white chocolate in medium metal bowl set over saucepan
simmering water (do not allow bottom of bowl to touch water)
and smooth and candy thermometer registers 110 degrees F.
(chocolate will feel
warm to touch). Remove from over water. Mix in
espresso powder, ground
espresso beans and spices. Add crème fraîche,
whipping cream, liqueur
and vanilla; whisk until blended (mixture may
until firm enough to hold shape, whisking occasionally, about
2 baking sheets with foil. Using about 1 tablespoon espresso mixture
each truffle, spoon mixture in mounds onto 1 sheet. Freeze truffles
just firm but still malleable, about 15 minutes. Quickly press or roll
each mound into irregular ball. Return to freezer on sheet.
remaining 12 ounces white chocolate in medium metal bowl set over saucepan
of barely simmering water (do not allow bottom of bowl to
until melted and smooth and candy thermometer registers
110 degrees F. Remove
from over water. Drop 1 truffle into chocolate.
Using fork, turn to coat.
Life truffle from chocolate on fork tines, allowing excess to drip back
into bowl. Using knife as aid, slide truffle off fork onto second
foil-lined sheet, being careful to keep truffle upright. Top with one
candied violet or 1 espresso bean. Repeat with remaining truffles and
chocolate, rewarming chocolate as necessary to maintain temperature of
F. Chill truffles until coating is firm, about 30 minutes. (Can
be made 2
weeks ahead. Chill in airtight container.) Let stand 20 minutes
temperature before serving.
C'est si Bon Bons
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