When I was a teenager, we came across a recipe for chocolate truffles in a magazine. I really wanted to try them so we whipped them up for Christmas. They weren’t exactly what I had hoped as the middles were rather hard compared to the luscious soft truffle filling I was wanting. Then we started talking about flavoring ideas and that is when the experimenting began. By time I was finished there was a pile of exquisite little chocolate balls; smooth creamy chocolate filling covered in a succulent outer chocolate shell. Some were chocolate raspberry and some were chocolate orange. I was so proud of these truffles because they were my first “signature” dish. Not that I am any amazing kind of cook but as a teenager trying to learn homemaking skills I was pretty thrilled when people began requesting them at gatherings. Truffles became a part of many fond memories for me. Even though they were just truffles they were my first big cooking success, they became a part of so many family holiday gatherings and I was so excited to pile them on cookie plates to share with others especially a couple I considered my adopted second parents because he especially liked the truffles.
When I got married I started incorporating the traditional truffles the first couple years and then got so busy with life and babies, they got forgotten. This year as I started getting caught up in some nostalgia, my kids were excited at the thought of trying momma’s truffle recipe. So out it came. It was so fun getting to make them again and share them with my babies. Even though the truffles are just that, it is funny how a little treat can become a part of great memories. In fact they may have to become a more than once a year tradition here.
Now that I am trying even harder to eat healthily I wanted to replace the flavorings in these with something better so this year I experimented with using orange essential oil to replace it. They were scrumptious!! Melt in your mouth orange chocolates that were a little hard to stay out of. My son especially has now marked these as one of his favorite treats. Now we want to share the recipe with you! I will include below the measurements for either a flavoring or the essential oil so you can choose whichever one you prefer.
Chocolate Orange Truffles
2 packages (12 oz. each) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1-8oz package cream cheese, PLUS 2 additional Tablespoons cream cheese, softened
2 teaspoons orange or raspberry extract OR 6 drops Orange Vitality Essential oil
2 teaspoons water
2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
2 Tablespoons non hydrogenated palm shortening
-Melt the chocolate chips for the filling in a double boiler or in a metal bowl fitted over a saucepan filled with about an inch of water.
-Using a mixer whip the cream cheese, extract or oil and water into the melted chocolate chips until it is well mixed.
-Cover the bowl well and place it in the fridge until it is firm enough to shape; about 1 hour.
-Cover 2 cookie sheets with parchement paper. Remove the truffle filling from the fridge and roll into small balls; around the size of a tablespoon. The filling may still be a little hard to work with as it is rather soft, but the balls don’t have to be perfect. Place them on the parchment lined cookie sheets.
-Once you have all the filling mixture rolled into balls, cover the cookie sheets and place them in the fridge to firm up for about 1 hour.
-Once the balls are close to being finished you can begin melting the chocolate for the outer shell. Simply melt the chocolate and shortening in a double boiler or I like to use a nice wide bowl over a saucepan of water. It makes it much easier to dip!
-Place each truffle on a fork and carefully dip into the melted chocolate and allow excess to drip off. Place each one back on the parchment paper.
-Once they are all dipped place the trays back into the fridge until the outer shell hardens. They are now finished! Place the truffles in an airtight jar or container and have fun sharing or just eating your scrumptious chocolate treats!