I love gingerbread. In my recent cookie baking for Christmas, I think the gingerbread cookies were my favorites!
Shortly after Christmas, I set out to make truffles. As I poked around some of the wonderful bloggers posts out there. I ended up at Shaved Ice Sundays, where this blogger did a post on a variation of cream cheese truffles.
Looking further, I found the blog, Bitter Sweet, with a variation of cream cheese truffles that had gingersnaps in them. Mmm, truffles and gingersnaps. What a wonderful combination. What a wonderful recipe.
But I really wanted to make a traditional type of truffle, with a ganache made of melted chocolate and cream. So I searched further and found this Gingerbread Truffle recipe at Epicurious.com from Bon Appétit magazine.
These truffles are absolutely amazing!
Adapted from Bon Appétit
Makes about 2 dozen
3/4 cup whipping cream
10 whole allspice
10 whole cloves
1 tablespoon molasses
1 1/2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt
7 ounces plus 12 ounces dark chocolate (I used Callebaut)
7 ounces plus 12 ounces high-quality white chocolate (they recommended Lindt or Perugina. I used Ghiradelli), chopped
1/2 cup chopped candied, uncrystallized ginger
Bring first 7 ingredients just to boil in heavy medium saucepan; remove from heat and let steep 1 hour. I couldn't decide whether to cover it or not. In the end I didn't.
Assemble your double broiler to melt the chocolate. A double broiler is really just a pot with a little bit of watter in it, and a bowl on top. You can see my post on candy melting if you want to see how I set mine up.
Once the water boils in the lower pot, add the white chocolate to the bowl/pot on the top level of the broiler. Let it get started heating up and the edges of the pieces starting to melt before adding the dark chocolate. I'm advising this because I found that the white chocolate took longer to melt, and I risked burning the dark chocolate while I waited for the white chocolate to finish melting. Be sure to keep the flame on low and stir often while the chocolate melts. Remove the top bowl from over water.
Pour the cream mixture through a fine strainer and into the chocolate. Discard the solids that are left in the strainer. Stir until the new mixture is completely blended. Then stir in the ginger.
I got my uncrystallized ginger at Trader Joe's.
When you remove your ganache from the refrigerator, you may find that it's almost rock-hard! Don't worry. Just let it sit on the counter for an hour or so, so it becomes soft enough to work with it.
Line a baking sheet with parchment. Using 1-inch melon-baller, scoop filling and roll between palms to form balls. Truth be told, I used a rounded tablespoon.
But a melon-baller would have been better - the kind that's like an ice cream scoop that has the little bar that helps to release the ice cream. My balls would have been more uniformly shaped, and that does matter! If they look awkward before you dip them, they will look awkward after you dip them too.
Place the truffles on the parchment. Chill them at least 2 hours. You want them to be good and cold when you dip them in the melted chocolate.
When it comes time to dunk the truffles in chocolate, you need to work quickly. Dunk all of them in the chocolate before you decorate, and cover them all as quickly as possible. There's plenty of time to adhere toppings before the melted chocolate sets. But if you wait too long to dunk them all, you risk burning the melted chocolate.
See my post, Candy-Making Tools, if you are unfamiliar with them and want to see pics. I was glad I had them, and they were not an expensive investment.
I placed my truffles on a Silpat sheet, but I'm sure that wax paper would be just fine. Then I decorated.
I loved my truffles. It was a great first experience. But in the future, I will get the proper melon-baller and I will work more quickly to dunk the chocolate. My truffles looked nice, but there was room for improvement as well.