When I'm on a roll I'm definitely on a roll. I can't resist making my family healthier versions for Easter and what makes it all worth while now is the they appreciate it. It goes against who I am and what I stand for to give them rubbish. Hey, I do it sometimes. Like when we went to the Cadbury Factory in Tasmania we got some chocolate to give them for Easter. We could have bought tons of it. Huge 10kg Toblerone, 3kg packs of Cherry Ripe, 10kg block of Milk Chocolate etc. etc.. But no! We got them all a small block of 'Green and Black' organic chocolate..
I didn't tell you about our visit to the Mona in Hobart. Mmmmm, it was interesting to say the least. It stands for Museum of Old and New Art. The venue, buildings, location, restaurant, bar and cafe are beautiful. The art!Well lets just say the dude has an obsession with creating life and death. Everything is extremely graphic, sexually and gorily, and 'in your face'. Not a place I would take my young children or grandmother, put it that way! I posted a picture on Facebook of the first painting we saw, don't ask me why I did it. It was horribly sexual and disturbing. Then every time I thought about how much I regretted it I didn't have my phone with me to delete it. I finally did but it took way too long. We're glad we went but we wouldn't go back put it that way.
Funny thing was the guy that owns it was getting married that day and we happened to park right behind where they'd set up the reception on the lawns. We walked straight into a beautiful spread of fresh and healthy looking salads, canapés and mains all served of gorgeous Tassie timber and pottery serving ware. We nearly grabbed ourselves a feed but no one else was so we kept walking. Later we found out it was a private function and there was security everywhere. When we asked what it was they said it was David Walsh's wedding.... we didn't ask who that was as we got a feeling we where supposed to know.. Didn't take long to work it out. Eccentric Millionaire I'd call him.
The oblong one is covering a date filled with an almond and the little round ones are plain and some have a walnut inside them. Something for everyone I call it. It's nice to get a little surprise when you bite into something sweet and decadent. There all easy to do it's just a matter of spooning the truffle mix into a piping bag and going crazy. I'm a little low on ingredients at the moment or there would have been a lot more variations.
1/2 cup almonds
1/2 cup pitted dates
1 cup dried coconut
1 tsp vanilla powder
About 1/2 to 3/4 cup almonds for coating.
1 cup tempered raw cacao paste
1 cup cacao butter
½ cup light agave, dark agave or coconut sugar
½ tsp Kalahari or Celtic sea salt - optional
½ tsp vanilla powder
Blend all ingredients in a blender for food processor until sticky enough to roll in balls. Then place in the freezer to cool while you are preparing the chocolate. At the same time quickly chop or blend some almonds to the coating at the end.
In a glass or ceramic bowl melt the cocoa paste, cocoa butter, Agave, salt and vanilla at low temperature, I did this in my dehydrator but you can also do it in your oven set at warm, keep it at about 40oc (105of) or over a bowl of simmering water making sure no water gets into the mix.
Stir the mix thoroughly until nice a glossy then allow to cool until it's nice and thick but still warm enough and soft enough to dip the cold balls in. Letting it do this helps to get a nice thick coating and allows it to firm up quicker. Dip each ball into the mix individually then remove with a fork so that the excess can drip off before rolling in the crushed almonds. Place onto baking paper and repeat until you have used all the balls. Refrigerate to get firm.
Use the remaining chocolate to make the Truffles using this recipe
Has anyone else been to the Mona? If you have what did you think of it?
I'd like to give Raw Pleasure a little shout-out. That's where all of my premium ingredients come from. Their standards, integrity and service is second the none! As I've mentioned before they often give me ingredients so that I can create recipes for their website which I love doing. Their an online shop and charge a flat rate of $10 per order. I'd love for you to support them and at the same time check out some of the other amazing things they have in their store. :-)
Happy Easter and most of all Happy chocolate making! :-)