Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Cranberry Truffles: What to do with left-over Cranberry Sauce!
Because the filling is soft, you might want to coat these truffles in dark chocolate. If you're coating them in chocolate, top them with some very fine toasted nuts or dried cranberries or candied orange peel or sea salt or leave plain. If you don't care that the truffles are a bit soft, skip the dark chocolate coating and just roll them in cocoa, superfine sugar, or chopped nuts and put them in the refrigerator to firm up a bit.
This recipe is a bit of trial and error, and I imagine you'll have some of the same. My first attempt was from a recipe from Elizabeth LaBau at About.com. It works very well, so be sure and refer back to it if you're a recipe follower. Her recipe is for cranberry sauce ganache truffles enrobed in dark chocolate.
The following recipe gives you two options. Both ways work. I'm O.K. with the truffles without the dark chocolate coating. Softer but delicious!
CRANBERRY SAUCE TRUFFLES
12 ounces dark chocolate (70-75% cacao), chopped
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
zest of 1/2 orange
1/4 cup sweet butter
1 lb chocolate candy coating
1/4 cup finely chopped nuts, some candied orange or dried cranberries or sea salt, for decorating (optional)
1. Chop the chocolate into small, even pieces and place it in medium heat-safe bowl. Place the cream in small saucepan over another sauce-pan over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer, but don't allow to boil.
2. Once cream is simmering, pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate. Gently whisk it together until the chocolate melts and you have a smooth, shiny chocolate liquid--this is your ganache. Add the softened butter, the orange zest and the cranberry sauce, and whisk until they are incorporated. Press a layer of saranwrap on top of ganache and chill until firm enough to roll, about 4 hours or overnight.
3. Once ganache has firmed up, use a small candy scoop or a teaspoon to form it into small balls.
If you aren't going to coat the balls in dark chocolate, roll the balls in cocoa or fine sugar or chopped nuts and place them on foil or waxed paper-lined baking sheet. Put in refrigerator. You're done!
If you are going to coat them, return unadorned balls to the refrigerator while you prepare the dipping chocolate.
If you are going to coat them:
4. Place the chocolate candy coating in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave it until melted, stirring after every 45 seconds to prevent overheating.
5. Once coating is melted and smooth, use two forks or dipping tools to dip the truffle balls one by one. After submerging truffle in coating, tap fork against the bowl and drag the bottom across the lip of the bowl to remove excess chocolate. Replace truffle on lined baking sheet, and repeat until all truffles are coated. Optional: top truffles with sprinkling of chopped pecans or dried cranberries or candied orange peel while the chocolate is still wet.
6. Place the truffles in the refrigerator to set the chocolate, for about 15 minutes. Once set, they can be served immediately, or stored in airtight container in refrigerator for up to a week.
Cranberry Truffles have the best taste and texture when allowed to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before serving.