The book: “Chocolat: Seductive Recipes for Baked Goods, Desserts, Truffles and Other Treats” by Eric Lanlard. 176 pages, $24.99. Published by Mitchell Beazley, 2013.
What you get: Everything about chocolate — the history of chocolate, how to choose and store chocolate, and how to melt and temper it (that is, stabilize it for dipping). The main categories of recipes are From the Bakery; Desserts; Truffles & Treats; and Drinks, Spreads & Sauces. It was difficult to pick just one recipe to try. We’ve been eyeballing Chocolate, Squash and Pecan Cake, Page 62; Hot Chocolate Souffles, P. 82; and Spicy “Aztec” Hot Chocolate, P. 150.
In his own words: “From indulgent chocolate drinks, tarts, muffins and mousses to gateaux, petits fours and elaborate creations for special occasions, join me in the madness of baking with chocolate!” – Eric Lanlard.
What we made:
OLD-FASHIONED DUSTED TRUFFLES, P. 126
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon espresso coffee
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
2 egg yolks
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
Gently melt the chocolate and milk in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, making sure the surface of the water does not touch the bowl.
Remove from the heat and stir in the coffee, butter and egg yolks until combined. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and let set in the refrigerator for 4 hours.
Place the cocoa powder on a plate. Using a tablespoon, scoop out spoonfuls of the chocolate mixture. Coat your hands in cocoa powder to prevent the mixture from sticking and roll the chocolate mixture between the palms of your hand to form walnut-size balls.
Using a fork, roll the truffles in the cocoa powder to coat. Store the truffles in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Our assessment: These truffles are extremely chocolate-y. Several of my taste-testers had things to say about the cocoa dusting. Some complained that it was a bit messy. Others thought it needed to be sweetened with a little granulated sugar. The truffles are a little goopy, so they need some sort of coating. An option is to roll them in finely chopped nuts or flaked coconut. We also recommend that you serve them still a little chilled rather than at room temperature because left out a long time, they get a bit mushy. That said, they are very easy to make and dark chocolate lovers will find them heavenly.