Sunday, January 12, 2020

The Trouble with Truffles

From time to time I find a conundrum when it comes to epicurean delights. Take for instance truffles.

Ask a chef at a fine restaurant to describe a truffle, and they will wax poetic about an expensive fungus that grows beneath oak trees in France and found by pet pigs.

Now, ask a pastry chef to describe a truffle, and they will describe a soft-centered confection coated in tempered chocolate. So, the only determination I can come up with is that a truffle is both; a fungus and a chocolate delight.

With left over ingredients from last month’s brownie recipe, and Valentine’s Day being the number one day in which chocolate is gifted, I will show you how to make a delicious and easy chocolate truffle cookie. This recipe uses relatively little flour, resulting in dense, fudge-like cookies. They keep well in the freezer (but you may have a hard time waiting for them to thaw before you eat them).

4 (1 oz.) squares unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 c. semisweet chocolate chips
6 tbsp. butter
3 eggs
1 c. white sugar
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
½ c. all-purpose flour
2 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
¼ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 c. semisweet chocolate chips

In the microwave or in a metal bowl over a pan of simmering water, melt unsweetened chocolate, 1 cup of the chocolate chips, and the butter stirring occasionally until smooth. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. In a large bowl, whip eggs and sugar until thick and pale, about 2 minutes. Stir in the vanilla and the chocolate mixture until well mixed. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; gradually stir into the chocolate mixture. Fold in remaining 1 cup chocolate chips. Cover dough and chill for at least an hour or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Using a medium cookie scoop, roll chilled dough into 1 inch balls. You may dredge the top of the balls in sprinkles, macadamia nuts or leave plain. Place on parchment paper covered cookie sheets so they are 2 inches apart. Note: It is easier to roll dough if your keep your hands slightly moistened.

Bake for 11-14 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy, JW