Nothing wraps up a dinner party with quite as much nonchalant flamboyance as a selection of handmade chocolates but what ever you do, don't forget to subtly drop the fact into the conversation; "When I was making these..."
This platter suggestion is comprised from 'veganised' versions of selected recipes from Joanne Harris' Little Book of Chocolat, created as a companion to her best selling novel.
I've not included the obvious ones for after dinner, mint, because there actually aren't any in her book but it would be very easy to amend any of the following (especially the truffles) with a drop of peppermint essence...
- Melt 35g of dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of hot (not boiling) water
- Warm and stir in the 'cream' and cinnamon until fully mixed, setting aside to cool for at least 2 hours
- Beat the filling until it is workable and either pipe or hand roll (depending on the consistency) into little dollops
- Chill until firm (I left mine over night)
- Melt the remaining chocolates in separate bowls, taking care not to overheat
- Using a cocktail stick pressed into the bottom of each 'nipple', carefully dip into first one, then the other melted chocolate
- Leave to set and serve at room temperature
- Melt the dark chocolate and white chocolates in separate heatproof bowls over a saucepan of hot (not boiling) water
- Using a teaspoon, drop out little pools of dark chocolate onto a sheet of baking paper (use the back of the spoon to spread them)
- Drizzle a smaller amount of white chocolate into the centre of each cooling disc of dark chocolate
- Sprinkle your chosen flavourings onto the still soft chocolates and allow to set
- Melt the chocolate, purée, 'cream' and sugar in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of hot (not boiling) water, mixing well
- Allow to cool to room temperature then chill for at least an hour
- Divide the mixture into even balls before tossing each in the cocoa powder until they are fully coated
Cooking Temperature: up to 50 degrees
Serves: between 20 - 30 chocolates in total
Keeps For: 7 days
Tips and Comments
- These are fantastic for celebrations, make lovely little gifts and general everyday pick-me-ups.
- The recipes use tiny amounts as it is assumed you'll make all three but just increase quantities for larger batches of one kind.
- White chocolate melts at a lower temperature; be careful not to over heat it.
- Of course you can mix and match flavourings, invent your own new combinations and disappear off on tantalising taste tangents... Just don't forget to lick the spoon