Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine's Day Chocolate Truffles

Last year I took a chocolate and confections class at the Culinary Institute of America, and learned how to make all kinds of chocolate goodies. Since that time I've been wanting to create my own truffle recipe, with allergen-free ingredients. What better time to do so than for Valentine's Day?

I've never been a fan of those chocolates in the heart boxes. Usually there are too many nuts, and too much milk chocolate. I admit, I like my chocolate dark and plain.

The ingredients for my allergen-free truffles are simple:

¼ cup So Delicious coconut beverage creamer
1 ½ tbsp Earth Balance Natural Shortening
1 cup allergen-free chocolate chips
½ tsp vanilla extract
¼ cup cocoa

The coconut creamer is the perfect replacement for traditional cream in these truffles because it contains thickeners (cane syrup and guar gum). Use your favorite allergen-free chocolate chips with this recipe. Both Enjoy Life and Divvies Bakery chocolate chips work beautifully, and any size chocolate chip will work.

I used 1/2 tsp orange oil instead of vanilla. You could substitute any other oil, or liqueur, to mix up the taste.

Let's get started making truffles, shall we?

Melt the coconut beverage and shortening together over medium heat. Slowly bring it to a boil. When boiling, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the chocolate chips and oil (if desired). Mix vigorously until you have a creamy ganache:

Refrigerate for an hour. Before refrigerating, I transferred the ganache to a mixing bowl to prepare for the next step -- soften the ganache with a mixer (use the paddle blade for about 30 seconds). It should look like this:

Scoop out truffle-sized balls of chocolate using a small spoon, and place them on a lined cookie sheet. Don't worry about how they look at this point.

Use your hands to gently roll the chocolate into smooth balls. (This works best with gentle pressure and cool hands.) Place them back on the cookie sheet. Place the cocoa in a shallow bowl, and gently roll each truffle into the chocolate until just coated:

I used natural unsweetened cocoa because I like the bitter taste of pure chocolate, but this is one rare case when I would suggest that you could use sweetened cocoa (just make sure it's allergen-free). Alternatively, you could roll the truffles in powdered sugar, or dip them in chocolate. Transfer them back to the cookie sheet and refrigerate for another hour:

Share them with someone you love!

Happy Valentine's Day!


Nancy @Real Food, Allergy Free said...

Yum! I'll take some please!

Lindsay said...

Thanks for this! I wanted to make something special for my daughter who's allergic to milk and soy and nothing beats chocolate for Valentine's day!

nancy said...

Just wanted to let you know I featured this recipe this week! Hope you'll share some more.

Lexi said...

What could I use as a sub for the coconut creamer? We are allergic to coconut here. Would hemp milk work?

Colette said...

Lexi, if you can't use the coconut creamer I would suggest trying just 3 tbsp hemp milk (reduced from 1/4 cup or 4 tbsp), increase the Earth Balance shortening to 2 tbsp, and -- if you can -- add 1/2 tsp corn starch or tapioca starch. I think that will give you about the same consistency, and will definitely taste great!

andieclark said...

My kids love truffles so I'm pretty sure they'll crave for this recipe. But our Mount Pleasant dentist has warned me not to give them too much sweets because they might get toothaches.

Unknown said...

Colette, I can't wait to try these! Along with my new donut recipe, this is going to be the best Valentines Day ever for my kids!! Thanks..