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FUN/DIY/ Homemade Gifts/ RECIPES/ Sweets

Chocolate Blackberry Brandied Truffles

chocolate blackberry brandied truffles
{Don’t you love the homemade, stamped gift tag?}

I have a handful of what I call ‘heart friends.’ You know, the kind where you feel that your hearts are literally knit together and could not imagine life without.  Well, that is what I call my friend Ann.  We have known each other for years, and being her hairstylist for years has kept us getting together regularly every 5 weeks.  Thank goodness her hair takes at least 2 hours, because we always have so much to share and it takes at least this long to get caught up!

Thanks to these regular hair dates, and thanks to how very dear Ann is to me, she knows me.  She knows all my junk and loves me anyway.  We joke that our hair dates are therapy for us both.  

A form of ‘therapy’ that Ann brought this last visit was a beautiful Christmas gift of Homemade Blackberry Brandied Truffles.  Oh. My. Yum.

I cannot tell you how delicious these are.  The nuts are crunchy, the chocolate deep & creamy, a hint of blackberry.  They are amazing.

She handed them to me sheepishly knowing I usually eat pretty healthy.  I reassured her that when it comes to dessert I do it right!  I may not do it often, but you bet I’m gonna eat her homemade goodies and enjoy every, last bite.  Cancer survivors learn how to live fully, and I think eating a real dessert once in awhile fits perfectly into living fully!

The minute I bit into one of these truffles, my eyes got big, and I knew I had to share this little treasure of a recipe with you all!  Enjoy…every last bite!

Blackberry Brandied Truffles 
1/2 pound chopped bittersweet or semisweet or milk chocolate (don’t use unsweetened!) (I like the dark chocolate the best 🙂
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted real butter
2 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons of blackberry brandy 

COATING CHOICES:  coconut or almonds (either sliced or crushed) but definitely toasted!  Toast in the microwave 30 seconds at a time, stirring every 30 seconds.  The presentation is beautiful when you use different coatings!

SURPRISE IN THE CENTER CHOICES:  nothing (great as is!) or tuck a well-drained maraschino cherry inside or a whole almond.
Melt chocolate & butter together in the microwave until hot, being careful not to scorch the chocolate.
Wisk in the egg yolks until mixture is shiny.
Stir in the brandy.  
Put in the refrigerator until cool enough to form into soft balls.
Use a teaspoon size cookie scoop, leveled off, for each truffle.  If desired, tuck in a cherry or almond & roll into a ball.  Coat the ball as desired.  Put each truffle in a miniature muffin liner or paper nut cup (can be purchased at Hobby Lobby in the cake decorating section).

Store in refrigerator.




To make orange flavored truffles, you can use Gran Marnier in place of the blackberry brandy. It is more pricey, but I just read online that you can go into your local liquor store and ask for an “airline bottle” of Gran Marnier.  The commenter said she does this all the time for recipes that call for small amounts of liquor.


No Bake, No Sugar Chocolate “Larabar” Truffles

You are gonna like these!  They are really good.  They are make from very healthy ingredients, and contain no sugar.  They taste very much like a Chocolate Coconut Larabar.  I have always been a fan of Larabars because they are made out of just a handful of healthful ingredients…
… the above bar contains-dates, almonds, walnuts, unsweetened cocoa and coconut. That is it!!

I knew these would be easy to replicate, so I was excited to see that the Nourishing Gourmet had already tried and succeeded!  I used her recipe and was really happy with how they turned out!

I packaged some of mine pretty to take to my Radiation Oncologist as a thank you on my last day of radiation.  He is a diabetic, and I knew he had been staying away from refined sugars.  He seemed pleased to have a treat that was sugar free, tasted them and approved!
You DO NOT have to be a date lover to like these.  I do not like dates!  In this recipe, they provide the sweetness and I could not tell there were in there. 2 of my 3 girls loved these and couldn’t get enough. My oldest is not a fan of coconut, so no luck with her.  The neighbor kids gave them 2 thumbs up and asked for more.
Here is the recipe, adapted from the Nourishing Gourmet:
 Chocolate “Larabar” TrufflesMakes about 20 truffles
    20 dates, pitted
    1 cup of coconut flakes, fine
    1/4 cup of coconut oil
    Heaping 3/4 cup of cashews, walnuts, pecans, or nut of choice
    2 ounces of unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    A few dashes of unrefined salt
1) In a food processor, combine the pitted dates, coconut flakes, and coconut oil. Process until the mixture is finely ground.
2) Add the nuts to food processor and process until the nuts are in very small pieces (some even completely ground)
3) In the warm pan, add the chocolate to melt. If you need a little more heat, put on the very lowest heat on the stove, just until melted to prevent burning. Scrape into the food processor and add the salt and vanilla. Process until well mixed.
4)  Roll into balls (refrigerate for 30 minutes if too sticky…mine were not) and place on a plate or in a container and then harden completely in the refrigerator. Keep cool until you serve and enjoy!

**I am pleased to link up to these parties!