Christmas is just a couple of short days away so I thought I would slip in a recipe for anyone who may be struggling with a hard to shop for giftee or who is looking for a little something chocolatey to embellish their dessert platter with.
These truffles are incredibly easy. Now that being said, if you want to make them in the least time possible, a little planning is needed to allow time for soaking and setting. I like to start in the morning, so that the cranberries can soak during the day. Then in the evening I mince them and make the ganache (which will then set overnight, at room temperature)… If you must, you can speed things up by placing the ganache in the refrigerator to set (maybe 3-4 hours), but the flavours won’t develop the same and the truffles won’t turn out quite as nice.
When choosing your chocolate for truffles, I recommend buying the best quality (and best tasting) you can afford. Keep in mind that the chocolate’s quality really does make a difference here. Also, if you don’t like the way the chocolate tastes going into the truffles, then you’re not going to like the truffles either. And please do not use chocolate chips (they are made with less cocoa butter which results in a less smooth truffle).
There is a pretty strong whiskey kick to these and are definitely for the grown-ups. If you want to adapt them to be family friendly, try substituting the whiskey with cranberry, pomegranate, or orange juice.
Whiskey Truffles with Cranberries
Recipe Type: dessert
Makes: 50 truffles (approx.)
- 1 cup Dried Cranberries
- 2 tbsp Whiskey
- 1 1/4 cup Coconut Milk (canned, full fat)
- 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 12oz (340g) Dairy-free Dark Chocolate, finely chopped*
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1/4 cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
- 1 tbsp Powdered Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
to make the truffles:
Combine the cranberries and whiskey in a small container**, cover and allow to soak for 5-8 hours at room temperature.
Strain the cranberries (reserving the whiskey) and chop until minced. I found that pulsing them in a food processor did a great job of this.
Heat the coconut milk, cinnamon, and salt in a large saucepan over medium heat until it just comes to a simmer. Remove from heat and immediately sprinkle in chocolate. Allow the chocolate to sit in the hot milk for 5 minutes; the heat from the milk should melt the chocolate. Stir the mixture with a spoon until smooth. Avoid the temptation to whisk or beat the mixture, as this would incorporate unwanted air. If necessary, place the pan over very low heat and continue stirring until the chocolate has fully melted and mixture is smooth. Stir in the chopped cranberries, reserved whiskey, and vanilla.
Pour mixture into a shallow bowl and allow to cool and rest overnight at room temperature (to avoid condensation, do not cover for at least an hour)… At this point there will be a very strong alcohol flavour, it will mellow somewhat overnight.
to assemble the truffles:
Make the coating by sifting together the cocoa powder, sugar and cinnamon.
Dust your hands with the cocoa powder mixture and roll the ganache into 3/4″ balls (they don’t need to be perfect). Toss the balls in the cocoa powder mixture to coat.
Serve at room temperature.
Store the truffles in the refrigerator in an airtight container, in layers separated with waxed paper.
*Use semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, based on your preference. Please invest in a high quality chocolate as it does make a difference here.
**I used a jar so I could periodically shake the cranberries, making sure that they all got properly soaked.