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Peanut Butter Truffles

Package a few of these in a pretty container for the perfect gift. They are easy to make and delicious. Tempering is a two-part heating process that prepares the chocolate for candy. Without tempering, the chocolate loses its luster. We made the peanut butter truffles three ways: we used Callebaut white chocolate that we tempered; we used Callebaut milk chocolate, which we also tempered; and for the third batch we used Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate with the accompanying recipe, which does not require tempering.

10.7 ounces peanut butter (we used Jiffy Crunch)
5.3 ounces melted white chocolate (to go into mixture)
8 ounces tempered white chocolate (for dipping) * (we also experimented with bittersweet and milk chocolate)

Melt white chocolate (such as Callebaut or Valrhona) and add to peanut butter. Mix thoroughly and allow to cool in refrigerator until firm. Dust hands with powdered sugar and scoop mixture into a teaspoon to form a ball. Keep hands coated with powdered sugar and roll until round and smooth. Put in refrigerator for a few minutes. Dip in batch of tempered white chocolate and decorate. Makes approximately 15 truffles.

To temper chocolate for these truffles, Diane Wickland uses the microwave but cautions that you need to closely watch your chocolate so it doesn't scorch. You will need an accurate thermometer for tempering. Cut the chocolate into pieces and put into a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for about 2 minutes on high, said Wickland. You want to bring the chocolate to 115 to 120 degrees. Take the chocolate out of the microwave and cool to temperature of approximately 89 to 90 degrees. To decrease the temperature, Wickland will "seed" the chocolate, adding small pieces of unmelted chocolate into the mixture, stirring to melt the pieces. This quick tempering method is ideal for truffles.

* Or you can use the accompanying easy recipe from Ghirardelli so you don't have to temper the chocolate.

Diane Wickland,
owner of A La Carte specialty food

Thursday, February 08, 2001



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