Thursday, December 23, 2010
Recipe Review: Taste of Home's Chocolate Orange Meltaways (Truffles)
These Chocolate Orange Meltaways are actually truffles. Last year for my post "The Trouble With Truffles" I made the mistake of using a lot of bittersweet chocolate. This recipe calls for milk chocolate and semisweet chocolate so I felt much safer making them!
If you are losing holiday baking steam and only have little bits of time here and there left before Christmas, you may want to consider making truffles. Yes, they are messy to make but you can do one step, take a long break, do another step, take a long break... In fact, those breaks are necessary to the truffle-making process. They are not difficult, just a little time consuming but I promise you, they are worth it.
Here is the recipe. You need to bring heavy cream (it MUST be heavy cream) to a boil but I also added the zest of a clementine to the cream for additional natural orange flavour.
Pour the hot cream over the combo of milk and semisweet chocolate chips. Let sit for at least a minute!
After the minute passes, slowly whisk the melting chocolate into the hot cream. I was not sure the cream was hot enough, the melting was going too slow, so I put the bowl into the microwave and nuked at 50% power for 20 seconds. I whisked, still not hot enough so I microwaved it again. It finally came together. No big deal!
Once the chocolate has melted into the cream, it is safe to add your flavouring without the chocolate seizing. I had some pure orange extract which is what I added but you could add Baileys, rum, raspberry extract, coconut extract... Truffles are very flexible when it comes to flavour.
Whisk in the flavouring and your ganache is complete and needs to chill in the fridge. I left it for a couple of hours but as a result, the ganache got hard as a rock, I had to let it come closer to room temp before I could shape it into balls:
I used my mini ice cream scoop but you can use a tbsp measuring spoon to divide the ganache. Shaping the mixture into balls is always messy but that is just part of the truffles experience. Put on a parchment or waxed paper lined baking tray and put in the fridge to chill. This time it does not have to be for very long, just get them cold enough so they do not melt in the hot chocolate.
You need to melt together milk chocolate with a little shortening which I did over a makeshift double boiler. Dip the chocolates in one at a time. I used my chocolate dipping tools to help let the chocolate drip off but you can definitely use a fork. You can add little garnishes of sprinkles on top. If you want to get fancy, a small piece of candied orange peel would be lovely. Me? I was exhausted at this point. I just left them draped in a thick cloak of chocolate.
They definitely have that homemade look to them but the flavour? Outstanding! Dreamy in fact. Yes, handmade truffles take some time and are a little finicky but if you follow some rules, you can actually play with them and make them your own. Chocolate and orange truffles make me weak in the knees. I give this recipe five out of five wooden spoons.