There are many ways to skin a cat…
With truffles, everyone has their own recipe and variations on the basic method: some whip the cream before adding it to pre-melted chocolate – I normally use very finely chopped chocolate which is melted by the boiling cream; some whisk the truffle mixture when it is finished to aerate it. Personally I prefer a dense, intense mixture, but it’s a very personal thing.
Here are a few variations from some famous chocolate makers. Frederic Bau from Valrhona says that the chopped chocolate and boiled cream method gives the longest-lasting flavour, which is only really a consideration if you want to make these professionally.
Make a ganache with the chocolate and cream as described, infusing the vanilla if you are using it in the cream as you warm it. Leave to cool in a bowl or tray for about 15 minutes in the refrigerator, then beat in the butter and return to the refrigerator. When it has set to the consistency of butter icing, it is ready to be piped or spooned into truffle-sized pieces.
If piping, put the mixture into a piping bag and pipe blobs of mixture about the size of a large cherry (
To finish, you can dip in tempered chocolate (described in detail on) using a dipping fork or your fingers, then drop into a large baking tray deeply filled with cocoa powder, roll briefly and leave to set. Shake off excess (don’t worry, most of the cocoa powder can be reused).
© 2003 Chantal Coady. All rights reserved.