Meet Typical Truffle’s healthier cousin – the one I’d usually be tempted to blanket in a coating of Nutella and roll through a mound of mini chocolate chips.
Ordinarily, I’m not a big cheerleader for “wholesome” desserts. Beurk [French slang for “gross”]! You’ll be far more likely to find an occasional post here about sugar-filled moelleux au chocolat [chocolate lava cake], chocolate fudge with Speculoos [the gingerbread flavored cookie butter that has thankfully made it’s way across the Atlantic], or deep-dish Banoffee pie [England’s greatest claim to fame].
After all, a calorie is a calorie, and I’d much rather savor a small serving of something drop-dead delicious. I don’t know about you, but date-stuffed cookies and avocado-filled chocolate mousse cups usually just fail to leave my taste buds singing. At the very least, I find butter, sugar, and cream to be a much more dependable team. À chacun son goût [to each his own].
But a single, generic, plain chocolate truffle clocks in at 70+ calories, with an eye-opening percentage of saturated fat. Even I am not going to have HALF of a truffle – that is, unless I’m splitting it with a gorgeous guy and there are at least 6 more little globes of ganache within reach.
There is also something to be said for a short and completely recognizable ingredient list. A few weeks ago, I ran across an “enlightened” chocolate truffle recipe while waiting in line at the local Hannaford [a popular grocery store chain, and what has unfortunately become one of my least favorite nicknames]. The front cover photo made my mouth water, and just like that, my late-in-the-game curiosity about the no-bake dessert phenomenon flattened my usual reluctance to “make over” a perfectly good thing.
Chopping up bittersweet chocolate is something of an arm workout. I’m pretty sure I burned the 35 calories per truffle hacking away with that axe of a knife.
I knew it was going to be successful the second I started stirring the chocolate, cocoa, honey, coconut milk, and coffee granules over low heat. Though cocoa powder replaces some of the chocolate in a traditional truffle and all of the cream and butter gets traded for light unsweetened coconut milk, this mixture smells like the real deal.
Now this truffle doesn’t have the satisfying outer crack of a Ferrero Rocher, or the signature silky filling of a Lindt sphere, but it does have an intensely dark chocolate flavor worth writing home about. It’s pure velvet inside, and you can dress up the outside any way you like. I used a variety of different toppings:
- A layer of crumbly nuts [toasted pistachios, almonds, and hazelnuts]
- A crunchy sprinkle crust [both glitzy pink and rainbow-colored]
- A dusty coat of cocoa powder [my very favorite] and maple sugar
Next time, I’ll try:
- Coconut flakes
- Raw cocoa nibs
- Crushed Biscoff cookies
- Pulverized white chocolate chunks
- Ground candied pecans
I didn’t adapt the recipe at all, except to scoop out larger amounts of truffle mixture [the ½ teaspoonful suggested really was teeny tiny, and half of it got lodged in the teaspoon] onto the tray. One last note: the less I handled the mixture the better my truffles looked.
Click here for the recipe.