An intense chocolate rush

By on December 10, 2011

My Christmas present for our readers is Twelve Days of Christmas Baking. Each installment, I’ll be offering you a favorite recipe to try for your own Christmas baking.

These are all tested recipes that I’ve been making for over 20 years and I hope they become some of your favorite Christmas recipes too.

For an intense chocolate rush, I highly recommend Hazelnut Chocolate Truffles. The truffles consist of two parts — a hazelnut base and a rich chocolate ganache.

Hazelnut Chocolate Truffles

1 cup hazelnuts, toasted
¾ cup flour
½ cup sugar
½ tsp salt
½ stick unsalted butter
6 oz. bittersweet chocolate, not unsweetened
2 large whole eggs

For hazelnut base:
Butter an 8-inch baking dish and dust with cocoa power.
Finally grind nuts in processor with flour, sugar, and salt.
Melt butter in saucepan. Remove from heat and add chocolate, whisking until smooth.
Add in eggs one at a time, whisking until smooth.
Stir in nut flour, until just combined.
Spread batter evenly and bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes.
Cool completely before adding ganache.

For ganache:
2 large egg yolks
1 cup heavy cream
1/8 tsp salt
12 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

Lightly beat yolks. Bring cream and salt just to a boil in a small heavy saucepan.
Temper the yolks by adding half of the hot cream to yolks in a slow stream, whisking constantly.

Whisk yolk mixture into cream and cook over low heat, whisking, until slightly thickened or until temperature registers 170 degrees. Do not let boil.

Remove from heat and add chocolate, whisking until smooth. Pour ganache over hazelnut base, smoothing top with offset spatula. Chill, covered, until firm, at least five hours. Cut into squares with a thin, warm knife.

See the first of Rosie Hawthorne’s Twelve Days of Christmas Baking »

Find more on Rosie Hawthorne’s blog, Kitchens Are Monkey Business »

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