Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sweet Melissa Sundays: Earl Grey Tea Truffles

It's once again my turn to host Sweet Melissa Sundays. Christmas is less than a month away, and I thought I would choose a recipe that would fit right in during the holidays. Something you could add to a tin of assorted cookies, or bring all on its own as a sweet hostess gift, or even just polish off while you watch Love Actually for the fifth time. Just me?

Between my fondness of the holidays and my ingrained love of tea (I am half-Scottish, after all), what choice did I have but to make Earl Grey Tea Truffles?

At the risk of being too articulate, these truffles are goo-ooo-ood. The slightly bitter taste of melting dark chocolate followed immediately by the fragrant, bergamot aftertaste of Earl Grey tea? Yes, please.

I hope you enjoyed these as much as I did. Thank you for baking along with me!

Earl Grey Tea Truffles
From the Sweet Melissa Baking Book
Makes about 5 dozen truffles

1 pound best-quality bittersweet (64-68%) chocolate
2 cups heavy cream
3 tbsp loose Earl Grey tea leaves, or the tea leaves from 7 tea bags
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup best-quality unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder, for rolling

1. Chop the chocolate into small pieces and put in a large bowl.
2. In a small saucepan over medium heat, heat the heavy cream and tea leaves to scalding. Turn off the heat, cover, and allow to steep for 15 minutes.
3. Return the cream to the heat and bring to scalding again. Strain the cream over the chocolate to cover completely. Set aside for 5 minutes and then whisk until smooth.
4. Whisk in the butter to the still-warm chocolate mixture until smooth.
5. Refrigerate until the truffle base is firm enough to scoop, at least 2 hours. Using a small #100 cookie scoop or a teaspoon, scoop out the truffle base and form into balls by rolling them around quickly in your hands.
6. Place the cocoa powder in a shallow soup bowl. Roll each truffle in the cocoa powder to cover.

The truffles are best eaten at room temperature. They keep refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 month. Let come to room temperature before serving.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tuesdays With Dorie Rewind: Rick Katz's Brownies for Julia

This week's Tuesdays With Dorie is something I've been looking forward to for quite awhile. Instead of baking a particular recipe, we've been given the chance to go back in the archives and bake something we missed the first time around.

It's like time travel for desserts.

I chose Rick Katz's Brownies for Julia because Dorie's brownies recipes are the best I've ever had, and I assumed that this recipe would be no different. I voted for the safe bet. But I'm glad I did.

Texturally speaking, these brownies are half-fudge and half-brownies. They're incredibly rich. But as you can see, that didn't stop my husband and me from indulging.

For the recipe, visit Chocolate Chic.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Tuesdays With Dorie: Peanuttiest Blondies

This week's Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is not something you'll have any trouble devouring: peanuttiest blondies, chosen by Nicole of Bakeologie.

Peanut butter. Peanuts. Chocolate. Well, in my case, mini m&ms. I can't think of a more fool-proof combination of flavours.

Not so fool-proof is my oven, which burned the bottom of these despite me baking them at 25 degrees less than the recipe called for, and rotating the pan halfway through. It's a testament to these blondies, though, that they were delicious despite their burnt bottoms.

Trust me: you're going to want to make these. For the recipe, visit Nicole's blog.

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