Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Chocolate Heart Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!

No big surprise that rather than really celebrate the mushy part of this holiday, I like to see it as another opportunity to make some (hopefully) delicious treats!

Being Food Network-obsessed, I've seen Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa, make her beautiful truffles at least a dozen times so I decided that I would give them a try. Not only did these look straight-forward and still fancy, but I also recently discovered that Trader Joe's sells large chunks of Ghirardelli's semi-sweet, white, and milk chocolate at a GREAT price (check it out - I usually find it in large bins right by the cashiers).

I used Ina's recipe pretty much verbatim, except that I omitted the Grand Marnier. I imagine that you can probably use just about any flavoring at the point where she suggests you add the liqueur, and I'll probably try that next time. Two tips, one a necessity and the other, a nice-to-know:

  • It's essential that you do actually finely chop the chocolate before adding the warm cream - otherwise, the chocolate won't melt completely and you'll have crunchy pieces left in your beautiful creamy chocolate mixture.

  • A melon-baller works like a charm to scoop out the chocolate mixture. She mentions this when she makes these on Barefoot Contessa, but it's left out of this recipe online.

If you're ready to get super fancy, try rolling the refrigerated balls in a ganache and dip them in finely chopped nuts of your choice!!!

As a little Valentine's Day treat... I bagged two truffles each in a little sack; hopefully it will provide some Valentine's and chocolate cheer!

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