I'm not much of a cook. I can't make waffles without using every single utensil and pot in the house, and I occasionally go check my email in the middle of making something, only to lose track of time until the fire alarm goes off....
But every year I make chocolate truffles with the kids. Now, normally making proper chocolates requires special copper pans and candy thermometers and all sorts of patience, timing and skills. None of which I have. But I like to spend time with my kids, and chocolate is as good of an excuse as any (although, do you *really* need an excuse for chocolate? Or time with your kids? Ever?)
Anyway, I came across a recipe for chocolate truffles a long time ago that suits me just fine - it's easy, inexpensive and fun to do with kids. I just spent the last hour tearing apart my damn basement looking for it. I also tried all sorts of searches online. Nothing.
All the "truffle' recipes online seem to start out with "get a degree in culinary arts, buy a thousand dollars worth of copper cooking equipment, install a gas stove, and then buy large chunks of unsweetened chocolate, some cream cheese, etc...
Nope, not for me. I just found the recipe I use and it's dead simple. It's also tattered almost beyond recognition. I'm afraid I'll lose it again so I'm posting to my blog.
Yes, I'm abusing your time and attention for my own selfish reasons, bad memory and poor filing skills. I can only hope to make it up to you for this horrible abuse of your trust and time by offering some delicious, easy and simple holiday cheer - the McAnerin household recipe for easy chocolate truffles:
Easy Chocolate Truffles
- 3 cups (3x250ml) semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 (14oz/300ml) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 tbsp (15ml) vanilla extract
Yup, that's it. No complicated recipes for THIS guy...
Coatings: Finely chopped toasted nuts, flaked coconut, chocolate sprinkles, colored sprinkles, unsweetened cocoa, confectioners' sugar or colored sugars.
Flavors: I also wrap the chocolate around maraschio cherries, though it's messy and doesn't turn out perfectly. Another thing I do is add rum, maple, banana and other flavors to the batches (1 tsp for each batch gives a nice light flavoring, one tablespoon is stronger). Yummy.
- In large saucepan, over low heat, melt chocolate chips with sweetened condensed milk.
- Remove from heat
- Stir in vanilla.
- Pour into medium bowl. If you are making different flavors this is where you separate into different batches and mix in the flavorings (rum, maple, butterscotch, etc).
- Cover and chill 2 to 3 hours or until firm.
- Shape into 1in(2.5cm) balls; roll in desired coating and/or decorate with frosting and candies. I use different coatings to tell the flavors apart.
- Chill 1 hour or until firm. Store leftovers covered in refrigerator.
Note 1: I use Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk, and as I was writing this, it occured to me that's probably where I got the original recipe from - a label on one of the cans. I just checked, and it was. Credits for the original version of the recipe to them.
Note 2: Yes, I know that 14oz is technically equal to 415ml, not 300ml, but that's the standard size can in Canada and this is an *easy* recipe. One can of sweetened condensed milk. It works just fine. Same goes for all other conversions - the focus is on easy and tasty, not chemistry...