Hand Dipped Truffles Made Easy
Melting Minutes Chocolate Academy - Lesson 8
There are many techniques for hand dipping truffles in tempered chocolate. This method is simple to do and creates a slightly imperfect finished product, which I love. They’re reminiscent of the truffle fungus this way. Ironically, that’s how the candy got its name! If done well, each candy will be its own unique masterpiece without looking messy.
The Melting Minutes Chocolate Academy series is a great place to start if you’re new to tempering chocolate. Your reward will be delicious homemade chocolate candy made by YOU!
Truffles centers are typically rolled into balls and are covered in cocoa powder or covered in tempered chocolate. The centers need to be firm and pliable enough to form a ball. There are many filling options that would work well: ganache, cookie dough, soft brownies…the sky is the limit.
This hand dipping method would also work for other applications such as hand dipping caramel squares. If it won’t pipe into a mold, hand dipping is your best alternative.
It’s worth noting that there are polycarbonate molds available that produce professionally looking, perfectly round spheres. This mold is an example of such a mold. So if you want to steer away from the inconsistent or homemade looking version, perhaps investing in one of these is something to consider.
Let’s get started!
For this example, I tempered my chocolate using the KitchenAid Precise Heat Mixing Bowl method. I prepared the delicious Salted Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough filling recipe and rolled the dough in approximately one inch balls. You could go smaller but I wouldn’t go bigger. I placed the balls in the refridgerator to firm them up a bit since they softened in my hand as I was rolling them.
Then I set up my work area. Hand dipping goes fast so it’s best to have everything ready. I covered a scrap piece of foam padding that was left over from a craft project with aluminum foil. An alternative could be styrofoam or anything that would hold up a toothpick. Then I gathered toothpicks and the coarse sea salt I used for sprinkling.
Once you’re ready, stick a toothpick in the filling ball and swirl the ball in the tempered chocolate.
Make sure it is completely covered and then lightly shake or wave the ball to encourage excess chocolate to run off into the bowl of chocolate. I keep a dish towel handy since it’s inevitable that chocolate will drip on my fingers.
Once I’m satisfied with the shape and I’ve made an attempt to gently remove the excess chocolate, I stick the toothpick in the aluminum foil covered foam for drying.
If you plan on sprinkling anything on top of your truffle, do it immediately. Otherwise your chocolate may begin hardening and your sprinkles will roll right off.
Once your chocolate has completely hardened, you can remove the toothpicks and pat yourself on the back. Your hard work will pay off the moment you take your first bite!
A Note on the Toothpick Method
The toothpick method works well because it helps avoid touching the chocolate. The downfall is it leaves a small hole at the bottom of the truffle. This truffle dipping tool is great because it solves the problem of the hole. However, it creates a new problem. When you set it down to dry it puddles at the base, which looks like it’s sitting on a pedestal. It boils down to personal preference and shelf life. The fact is a truffle that is completely coated in chocolate will be less susceptible to mold over time than one with a hole. Fortunately for me, these things won’t last long enough before they get eaten.
Decorations and Toppings
Truffles are simple but can be presented in elegant ways. Although they look great plain, I like to dress them up a bit. Here’s some ideas for sprinkling or drizzling:
- Sprinkled with: coarse sea salt, fleur de sel, chopped nuts, toffee, sprinkles, small hard candy, coconut or shavings of white chocolate
- Drizzled with: lighter, darker or colored chocolate
- Decorated with: simple flowers made from royal icing
Place the finished truffles on a decorative plate or box them up using glassine paper candy cups. These make great gifts or can be used to delight guests of your next big event (dinner party, baby shower, bridal shower, wedding, etc).
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