Since we're still covered in snow here in Northern Indiana, a little trip back to childhood just screams Hot Chocolate! But we're grown-ups now, so the experience begs for something a bit more... special. So, I introduce you to hot chocolate truffles!
|Clockwise from top right: Caramel, Earl Grey, Peppermint Mocha, Spicy|
These were Christmas gifts to my co-workers (along with some homemade marshmallows and sharpie mugs). At first I wanted to make some of these hot chocolate on a stick. But it turns out, that pin only goes to somebody's tumblr page. Sad face. So I went on a search for a recipe which led to many things, the best of which was this recipe from Your Cup of Cake for Hot Chocolate Truffles. Only, I also saw this recipe from Craft Passion, for Hot Cafe Mocha Truffles. Thinks to self: mmm, coffee and hot chocolate are good... but the coworkers don't like coffee... Continue the search to find this delicious list of hot chocolate flavorings at The Ticket Kitchen... but no recipes. So, back to Your Cup of Cake for some tweaking! I decided I would try making 4 different flavors (once the Nebraskan found this out, he told me I was just making more work for myself... he was right, of course, but... I wanted more flavors!!!!): Caramel, Earl Grey (because this, which is delicious), Spicy and Peppermint Mocha.
Let me clarify: you melt these truffles in a cup of hot milk. The mom didn't get that memo before just taking a bite :) She said they were good that way, but a bit strong.
I used the recipe from Your Cup of Cake as a base, but since I was making 4 different kinds I decided to half the recipe (except, right now as I'm looking at it, I realize that I didn't put enough chocolate chips in... nevermind that, they were still yummy). You can visit Your Cup of Cake for all the beautiful step by step photos.
Here is the basic recipe which I used for the Spicy:
1* c. Chocolate chips**
1/2 c. Cream
1/2 T Sugar (or, 1 1/2 t if you need something more exact)
1/8 t Salt
1 t Vanilla Extract (or really, whatever extract you want: peppermint or almond would be tasty)
1 1/2 t cayenne pepper
6 t cinnamon
1. Pour everything into a heavy-bottom saucepan. Heat on low until melted. Let cool in the fridge until it can be easily scooped.
2. Scoop 2-3 T at a time and place on parchment covered pan. Freeze for one hour.
3. Mix together cayenne and cinnamon for coating
4. Form into balls with your hands and coat cayenne/cinnamon mixture.
5. Wrap in saran wrap and store in fridge. This step is especially important if coating in crushed candy canes.
Dissolve 4 t instant coffee in the cream before adding remaining ingredients
Coat in crushed candy canes
Replace cream with 1/2 c caramel sauce (I used homemade since it has cream in it)
Coat in gold sprinkles
Steep 4 1/2 t (or more) loose leaf tea in hot cream for 8-10 minutes. Strain, making sure you have 1/2 cup cream. Continue recipe as written above
Coat in mixture of sugar and lemon zest
To enjoy, drop truffle into 1 - 1 1/2 cups hot milk. Stir until melted and drink!
* feel free to use 1 1/2 cups since that's closer to half from the original recipe
** I love Ghirardelli 60% Cacao chocolate chips
The end verdict was that these were wonderful and made a great gift! I will probably be making more next year! However, the flavors were not as strong as I had hoped, so I would try to amp up the flavor and increase the chocolate-y factor to make these an even more special treat!
What was your favorite treat as a kid? What do you think would make a great flavor for hot chocolate?
Check out all of the other yummy childhood treats below!