Chocolate Citrus Truffles. You know that cliche seen in a movie where the boyfriend hands his girlfriend a box with a bow on it and she gets so excited because she knows it will be a beautiful piece of jewelry? Well that’s my reaction when I get a beautiful box of truffles. There is nothing more beautiful and delicious then a box of handcrafted truffles.
5 years ago my husband and I visited family in Europe, Switzerland to be exact. If you want an amazing chocolate experience go to Switzerland. There are so many chocolate shops but each one has its own unique flair. Each truffle is like a work of art. From the large named chocolatiers to the boutique chocolatiers each shop takes their work very seriously and artfully. The truffles are on the smaller side in Europe than what you would typically find here in the US but that just means I can eat a few more.
Being a Chocolatier is just as much a science as it is an art. Each piece has to kept at an optimal temperature. Coating each piece requires the chocolate to be tempered to the exact degree by first heating the chocolate high, bringing it low and then bringing it back to a specific degree. If you are off by one degree it can be the difference between a perfectly blanketed chocolate that snaps in your mouth or a chocolate that has no snap or a chocolate that blooms, meaning white streaks that appear from variations in temperature. For anyone who has worked with chocolate you know it can be an extremely fun medium to work with but also a pricey one. I have had my share of mistakes with chocolate and it is heartbreaking both expectation wise and budget wise.
That brings us to these little beauties, Chocolate Citrus Truffles. I was in the mood for chocolate truffles but did not have the time to perfectly temper my chocolate and dip each one. So I made a truffle that is coated in tiny white chocolate shavings. That way you get a slight crunch or snap with each bite before getting to the rich, delicious melt in your mouth ganache. The added citrus brings a bit of brightness to the rich chocolate and is a nice surprise.
I begin by finely chopping my chocolate bar and putting into a bowl. You can use chocolate chips but they do have stabilizers (ever wonder how a chocolate chip keeps it shape after being backed at 350 degrees F? stabilizers) which I find sometimes takes a little longer to melt. I heat my cream to boiling and pour over my chocolate, let it sit 1 minute and then stir in small circular motions until all blended. I then add my Grand Marnier and lemon zest. I stir to make sure all is mixed well and let sit in a cool dark place over night so the ganache can cool and firm up.
When ready I lift the ganache brick out of the pan and cut into equal squares. I wash my hands under cold water so the chocolate does melt as quickly for the next step. I pull out a square of ganache, pinch in the square corners and roll between my palms to form a ball, then roll into white chocolate shavings and set on parchment lined cookie sheet to set. I have to rinse hands in cold water after about three truffles or else the chocolate gets way too soft in my hands. I repeat until all are done.
These Chocolate Citrus Truffles are rich and citrusy in flavor and smooth and creamy in texture. They are a real treat for yourself or to share with someone else.
Chocolate Citrus Truffles
- 13 oz. semi sweet chocolate finely chopped
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 Tbsp Grand Marnier or other orange liquor
- 2 Tbsp lemon zest about 2 lemons depending on size
- 5 oz white chocolate shavings can be done with a vegetable peeler
- Prepare 8x8 pan by lining with aluminum foil, foil up the sides as well.
- Prepare white chocolate shavings in a shallow dish
- Prepare a cookie sheet line with parchment to place the finished truffles on to set
- Put chopped semi-sweet chocolate in a heat proof bowl.
- Heat heavy cream to boil
- Pour heavy cream over chocolate, let sit for 1 minute, then stir in small circular motions until completely mixed.
- Add in Grand Marnier and lemon zest. Stir to combine well. Store in cool dark place to cool and firm up over night.
- When ready take the ganach brick out of the pan onto a cutting surface and cut into equal squares (I cut 7 strips down and 7 strips across which provided 49 squares/small truffles).
- Run hands under cold water and dry. (you will probably have to do this after every third truffle)
- Take one ganache square and pinch in the corners (this will make it easier to roll) and roll into ball. Immediately roll in shave white chocolate and put on cookie sheet to set.
- Repeat until done.
- Store in a cool dark place until ready to serve. Can be kept in air tight container for up to 4 days.