From French Classics Made Easy By Richard Grausman,
Founder & Chairman, C-CAP
Prepared by Mehdi Chellaoui
Chocolate formed to resemble truffles, as they emerge from the earth covered with “dirt,” have been a Christmas specialty in French candy shops for decades. Their worldwide popularity has spawned truffle shops and candy companies specializing only in truffles – although many of the confections carrying this name hardly resemble their namesake. It now seems that anything round and chocolate is called a truffle.
The original chocolate truffles were made of a sturdy, fudgelike mixture, concocted of chocolate, butter, and egg yolks, that can be formed by hand and stand at room temperature without melting. But the contemporary chocolate truffle is made with a combination of chocolate and fresh cream (called ganache) and must be handled carefully and refrigerated, for it melts at room temperature.
Because they melt easily when handled, the soft, creamy chocolates, when formed into balls, are dipped in chocolate to lightly coat and protect them. They are then rolled in cocoa powder, which tastes much better than the soil it represents. Biting into a finished chocolate truffle provides a wonderful combination of sensations. Bitter cocoa covers a thin layer of crunchy bittersweet chocolate, which surrounds a creamy, meltingly soft chocolate center. Only those with incredible willpower can refuse a second one.
Trying to make the truffles in one day can be difficult and frustrating, but doing a little work over a two- to three-day period makes truffle-making easy and enjoyable.