Christmas is a fabulous chance to get creative in the kitchen. I love to whip up a myriad of festive treats to give to loved ones, friends who pop in for a mug of cheer and a mince pie and even for all of our little poppets who beaver away so earnestly all year through in Mr C’s workshop.
Trust me anyone who receives a bag-full of these decadently dark Cherry and Pistachio Chocolate Truffles will feel so special and warm with Christmassy spirit. So give them a go darlings…
Cherry & Pistachio Chocolate Truffles
700g good quality chocolate (I use 350g dark chocolate and 350g milk chocolate)
50g unsalted butter, softened
125g unsalted pistachios, chopped
125g dried cherries, chopped
2 x 395g cans of condensed milk
A pinch of fine salt
2 tbsp cherry brandy (optional)
50g icing sugar, sifted (for dusting)
Line a 32 x 26cm baking tray with cling film so it sticks to the sides of the tray and over laps the sides of the baking tray. Alternatively you can use a disposable tin-foil baking tray as it is.
Melt the chocolate in the microwave on a low setting for around 5 thirty second blasts, stirring between each blast. Once the chocolate has almost melted, stir to encourage the remaining chocolate to continue to melt and set aside.
Melt the butter, condensed milk and a pinch of salt in a large saucepan over a low heat, stirring as you go. Be patient as you do not want to burn the sweet mixture.
Add the chocolate to the melted condensed milk and chocolate and continue to stir. Mix in the pistachios, dried cherries and cherry brandy (if desired). Once the mixture is all combined, pour the mixture into the baking tray and spread it evenly to the sides.
Set aside to allow the chocolate mixture to cool. Once cool, cover with foil and pop in the fridge to set for about three hours, or overnight is fine.
Once set, turn the chocolate slab out onto a large wooden chopping board. With a large knife, cut the chocolate into many small squares. Once cut refrigerate half of the chocolates in the foil tray whilst you dust the board with a little icing sugar to roll the truffles in. The icing sugar ensures that the truffles aren’t sticky in people’s hands. You can also use sifted cocoa if you prefer but little ones prefer the sweetness of icing sugar.
Once all the truffles are dusted lightly with icing sugar, pop a small amount – say 8 pieces – into little Christmas-themed cellophane treat bags to give out to your family and friends.