Chocolate Truffles for Michael

 

My son Mike loves chocolate truffles!  Every Christmas and every birthday I make him truffles - but not any truffles - these incredibly yummy cake filled truffles. 

They are kind of a cross between a truffle and a little petit four. And since they are so delicious, I decided to share the recipe.  It was given to me by a friend over 30 years ago and I have seen nothing like it anywhere else.  These are perfect for the winter holidays and always welcome at holiday parties.  But just a little warning here - they usually don't make it to the party because they mysteriously evaporate into thin air before you can get them there!  I know that to be true because Michael and Diane always told me that's what happened and they are still, to this day, sticking to their story.

Chocolate Truffles

1 package chocolate cake mix (or one recipe for a 8" or 9" two layer homemade cake)

Note: be sure to have on hand the ingredients called for on the cake mix package or in your favorite cake recipe)

1/2 cup softened butter

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 cup confectioner's sugar (powdered sugar)

1/2 cup apricot preserves

1 teaspoon vanilla

16 oz chocolate chips*

16 oz good quality bitter sweet chocolate like Lundt*

Mix and bake the cake mix as directed on the box (or prepare your favorite homemade chocolate cake).  Cool.  

Melt butter over low heat.  Add cocoa and sugar and stir until smooth.  Add apricot preserves and vanilla and stir until smooth and glossy. 

Remove sauce pan from heat; crumble the cooled cake into the mixture and mix until well blended and moist.  Roll into 1" balls.  (Sometimes I prepare the recipe to this point and freeze the balls on a wax paper lined cookie sheet and then, once they are frozen, I place them in a container and store them in the freezer for future use.)

In the top of a double boiler (or a heat proof bowl set over a sauce pan), melt the semi sweet chocolate chips and the bitter sweet chocolate, stirring occasionally until the mixture is smooth.  Do not ever let the water actually boil.

Dip truffles into the melted chocolate, completely coating each with chocolate.  Place on a jelly roll pan lined with wax paper.  Let stand at room temperature until the chocolate hardens and is shiny.  Store in air tight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

*  The original recipe called for 8 oz of each chocolate, but I have never found that to be enough for all the balls.  Any leftover chocolate can be saved and used as shavings on cupcakes or melted and drizzled over cookies.

Notes: 

1.  I like to use bamboo skewers to dip the balls in chocolate.  One to dip and one to coax the dipped balls off the dipping skewer onto the wax paper.  This leaves a little hole in the top which I fill with a dab of chocolate. 

2. Be sure to let the excess chocolate drip back into the pan so that you don't wind up with a truffle that looks like a chocolate ball floating in a pool of chocolate! Of course, if  it happens - you could stick on a candy face and say you did it on purpose!  (You'll notice I have a few floating chocolate balls on the tray.)

3. You might want to place a little shaved chocolate, a piece of crystalized ginger, chopped nuts or some other little goodie on the very top before the chocolate completely hardens.

3.  Avoid making these - or any dipped chocolate for that matter - during the summer months.  I am fortunate that Mike's birthday occurs while it is still cool up here in the Pacific Northwest. But I'm cutting it close!  Cool dry days are best.

4. Sometimes you will get a little "bloom" or whitish streaking on your chocolate.  This only affects appearance - the chocolate is fine.  If you serve the truffles within the first 24 hours, it is likely no boom will occur.  Bloom is a result of improper melting or "tempering" of the chocolate.  Check out these tempering tips here and here and watch a video here.

If my son ever got a truffle from me without a little bloom on it he'd most likely think there was something wrong!  I have never mastered tempering.  And as you can see, I am not the greatest "dipper" either! 

Today marks  200 days until Christmas

To celebrate, bookmark this as a great "do ahead" recipe for the winter holidays! Plan to make the balls in early November and then dip them the morning of the day you are planning to serve them.   You can even dip half the recipe and save the other half for another day.

Enjoy!

 

Chocolate? Apricots? Yowza...

Chocolate? Apricots? Yowza... you had me at hello, Pam! Planning to make these as soon as the humidity eases up. Thanks!

Oh these look soooo yummy!

Oh these look soooo yummy!

Oh, these look good,

Oh, these look good, definitely going into the "to make" file. Thank goodness it's too humid here right now to work on these, but may have to make some chocolate cake balls for the freezer when I get the chance... just in case...

Pam,these really look like

Pam,these really look like they would be fabulous! I have not really liked any truffle much because I'm not a fudgey type person, but a cake-y type person. my favorite brownies are the cakey ones. And apricots are a great touch! They really compliment chocolate! I look forward to making these. maybe for my anniversary in August...?

Thank you!

p.s. My mom's banana cream pie always disappeared mysteriously, too. I decided it was something about our house.

Just one of my weaknesses!

Just one of my weaknesses! Chocolate, especially good quality chocolat like this is impossible for me to ignore. Groan.. and I haven't evn had breakfast yet!

Thanks for sharing this fabulous recipe!

Wow... those look so good...

Wow... those look so good... and perfect! I'm positive I should never be left home alone with these. :)

Pam those look incredible. My

Pam those look incredible. My boy would love these (and me too.) Thanks for sharing it. I have a really good chocolate souffle cake recipe that I think would be perfect for the cake part, and extra, extra rich - yum!
Did you say Christmas? Oh I don't think I can think Christmas with a big house move ahead, I can barely think past next week!

Oh those look perfect, YUM!

Oh those look perfect, YUM!

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