Decadent Chocolate Truffles
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These are so much fun to make (kids can get involved), and when you coat the truffles in a variety of ingredients, they become a beautiful, delicious dessert.
1 8 ounce container nondairy cream cheese
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 cups nondairy semisweet or dark chocolate chips (or any high-quality chocolate), melted
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Ingredients for coating truffles (see below)
Yield: 50 to 60 truffles, or servings
In the large bowl of a food processor, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add confectioners’ sugar, 1 cup at a time, until well blended. Add melted chocolate and vanilla and stir until thoroughly combined.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or as long as overnight. The longer you refrigerate the batter, the easier it will be to roll into perfect balls. However, it will definitely require elbow grease to scoop them out.
Shape into 1-inch balls. Refrigerate again if the batter is too soft, especially if your kitchen is warm. Use a strong spoon or melon baller to create uniform sizes.
Once rolled, either send balls back to fridge or coat in any of the following:
* Finely ground nuts (pecans, hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds)
* Sifted cocoa powder
* Toasted or raw coconut
* Sifted confectioners’ sugar
* Candy sprinkles (the sparkly kind)
Serving Suggestions and Variations
To create a hard chocolate shell, refrigerate rolled truffle balls for at least 30 minutes (longer is fine, too). Melt some nondairy chocolate, either a good quality chocolate bar or chocolate chips, and dip each ball into the chocolate. Return to the refrigerator and let set for at least 1 hour.
To change the truffle flavor, omit the vanilla and replace it with 1 tablespoon of another flavor. You can even get several flavors out of one batch by dividing the truffle “batter” into thirds when you first combine the ingredients, and then adding 1 tablespoon of whatever flavor you want to each mixture.
For an elegant dinner party, prepare the truffles with the melted dark chocolate coating, then buy some edible gold and silver powder from baking specialty shops and dust over.
For grown-up parties, add 1 or 2 tablespoons Baileys Irish Cream, Kahlúa, Grand Marnier, cherry brandy, or another liqueur.