Written in Chocolate is back from a brief holiday hiatus wiiiiiith: Chocolates! I don’t know about you, but I’ve been matching my weight pound for pound in chocolate and sugar cookies this past week. I’m pretty sure if you cut me open I’d bleed liquid fudge. They don’t call it the most wonderful time of year for nothing.
To get back into the swing of things we’ll keep it short and snappy. Christmas may be over, but still tis the season of eggnog and peppermint flavors, which is what the interiors of these little beauties contain.
Ganache: it’s rare when something so delicious is so deceptively simple. For dark chocolate ganache, get together equal parts, and by this I mean equal weights, of chocolate and cream. For white chocolate (because it’s softer) use two thirds chocolate and one third cream. Use a good quality chocolate, since this is your base. For both of my ganaches I used Callebaut, which I personally prefer over Valrhona.
Chop up the chocolate into little tiny chunks. Scald the cream, and pour over the chocolate. Let sit for a minute, then gently whisk together, staying in the middle of the bowl until everything is evenly distributed and emulsified.
Now add the flavorings: peppermint extract to taste in the dark chocolate, and freshly grated nutmeg to taste and a tablespoon or two (to taste) of good quality bourbon in the white chocolate. Let the ganaches cool to a pipeable consistency.
Now, the hard chocolate shell that encases the chocolate generally involves a lengthy and tenuous process of getting the chemical makeup of the chocolate aligned just so, (called “tempering”) but I admit that I cheated a bit and used “fake” white chocolate (without real cocoa butter) as the hard outer shell because it was such a time saver. My apologies; feel free to air your grievances and maybe next year I’ll hire a bunch of elf-minions to do my chocolate tempering bidding.
Anyway, then I basically just painted the interiors of a chocolate mold with the melted white chocolate, let it set, then piped in my ganache and sealed the bottoms with more chocolate.
The green and red decorating colors were created by using powdered dye (liquid would make the chocolate seize) and piping it on with a parchment cone. Then I dusted edible glitter on top, and shazam! Seasonal, elegant, glammed-up candies for family and friends. Happy holidays!