It’s a little late for these. Maybe this would have helped in time for the holiday season, when I first made them. Or, I could have used the excuse of Valentine’s Day to give you a chocolate recipe.
Luckily, these involve mint. Stock up on the green mints and add a green bow, and they will be a perfect St. Patrick’s Day gift. Yes.
Mint Coffee Truffles
1 lb. dark chocolate, broken into pieces the best quality you can afford
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon shortening
1 cup whipping cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/8 cup very strong, fresh espresso
Starbrites Peppermints, about 1/4 cup crushed
In a double boiler, melt broken pieces of the dark chocolate. If you don’t have a double boiler – I don’t – you can use a saucepan and put a mixing bowl in it, like so. In a separate sauce pan, heat the cream until it is very hot but not boiling. Pour the cream over top of the melting dark chocolate and stir with a spoon as you add it. Stir with spoon until the mixture is smooth. Now, if you want to make a batch of coffee flavored truffles and a batch of plain chocolate ones with a hint of vanilla, you can pour half of the melted chocolate mixture into another bowl at this point. Add vanilla to BOTH mixtures. To ONE mixture add the espresso. Put both bowls in the fridge to cool. Usually this takes about an hour to an hour and a half, but basically you want the chocolate to be hard enough to form small truffle balls.
Once the dough is hard, form the balls and arrange them on a plate or baking sheet. Chill each filled plate/tray as you prepare the semi-sweet chocolate for dipping. Melt the semi-sweet chocolate chips in the double boiler. Be sure that the water is hot, possibly simmering but definitely not boiling. Stir the chocolate until it is smooth and add the shortening. The shortening makes a shinier finished product that looks prettier, but it is not a required ingredient.
Roll the cooled truffles in the melted chocolate over the stove. This is the trickiest part. I use a spoon and kind of flip the truffle in the chocolate, then I carefully remove the truffle with clean hands and place it, dripping with chocolate, on the cookie sheet. They won’t look perfect, but you can try different methods to get them to look as nice as possible. Do this quickly; the longer you take the more difficult the chocolate chips become to work with.
Once you have your truffles, you can sprinkle the chopped mint over some or all of them.