Prep time: 1 hour, not including chill times
Cook time: 10 minutes
These truffles reflect the current trend toward blending salty and sweet flavors. Once the truffles have been dipped, you give them a light sprinkling of coarse sea salt which not only makes them beautiful but is a surprise to the palate. You can use semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, depending on the flavor you prefer.
They do take a lot of prep because the mixture needs to chill three times, but the results are worth the wait. This recipe is based on one from Bon Appetit magazine.
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons water
2/3 cup heavy whipping cream
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
12 ounces semisweet chocolate
1 tablespoon coarse sea salt
To make the filling: Break apart the 8 ounces of bittersweet chocolate into small pieces. Place it in a metal bowl over a saucepan of lightly simmering water. Make sure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl. Stir the chocolate until it is melted and smooth. Remove the chocolate from over the water and set it aside.
Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan. Stir over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Dip a pastry brush in water and use it to wash down the sides of the pan. This will prevent any undissolved sugar crystals from falling into the sugar syrup and turning the mixture grainy. Increase the heat slightly and bring the syrup to a soft boil.
Cook, without stirring, until the syrup turns a deep amber color, about four minutes.
Add the cream all at once. The mixture will bubble and steam. Reduce the heat to low or remove the pan from the heat and stir the mixture until it is smooth. Pour the cream mixture into the melted chocolate and stir until it is blended. Chill the filling until it is firm, about three hours.
Finishing the truffles: Place the cocoa in a bowl. Roll the filling mixture into balls using about 1 tablespoon of filling for each. Roll the balls in cocoa and place them on a piece of foil. Cover and chill overnight.
Place the 12 ounces of semisweet chocolate (you may use bittersweet if you prefer) in a metal bowl over gently simmering water. Do not allow the bowl to touch the water. Stir until the chocolate is melted and thin. It should be about 115 degrees, no hotter. Remove the bowl from the water. Dip one truffle filling at a time into the melted chocolate. Use a fork to roll the truffle in the chocolate until it is completely covered. Lift it out of the chocolate and place it on a baking sheet lined with foil. Repeat with the remaining truffle centers.
Lightly sprinkle the truffles with the coarse sea salt. Chill until firm and bring to room temperature before serving.
Per truffle: 141 cal.; 2 g pro.; 17 g carb.; 9 g fat (6 sat., 3 monounsat..); 9 mg chol.; 103 mg sod.; 2 g fiber; 8 g sugar; 53 percent calories from fat.