Candy Making: Truffles, BonBons, and Pate de Fruit for Daring Bakers

     I was so excited when I saw the challenge for this month’s Daring Baker’s Challenge.  The August 2011 Daring Bakers’ Challenge was hosted by Lisa of Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drive and Mandy of What the Fruitcake?!. These two sugar mavens challenged us to make sinfully delicious candies! This was a special challenge for the Daring Bakers because the good folks at http://www.chocoley.com offered an amazing prize for the winner of the most creative and delicious candy!

      I had a million ideas in my head immediately and couldn’t wait to get started.  My first idea was for a chocolate bark with liquor in it, but it ended in a delicious mistake that was a Bailey’s Nut Truffle.  The truffle is filled with Bailey’s Irish Cream, toasted almonds, and chocolate ganache.  I made this first in my kitchen and then again on vacation.  The Bailey’s pairs perfectly with the toasted almonds and creamy ganache and I then dipped it in tempered milk chocolate.

      The second candy I made was a strawberry pate de fruit.  This was a tricky candy.  It was easy to make, but I had some difficulty with it firming up and would double the pectin next time I make it.  Still, the fresh strawberries really stood out and tasted amazing cut into bite sized pieces and rolled in sugar.

     The last two candies are filled bonbons.  These were almost the death of me.  I made 3 batches before I finally learned to put them in the refrigerator before unmolding the chocolate.  The first bonbon is a salted caramel one.  The salted caramel filling was sweet but the salt added another dimension.  The second bonbon was a cinnamon vanilla caramel filled one.  I loved the sweet caramel with hints of spicy cinnamon and lightly scented with homemade vanilla extract.

      All four candies were very tasty and impressed my friends.  I loved making them and know I’ll be making many more variations in the future.  This was a fun challenge with limitless possibilities.

Bailey’s Nut Truffles (a Hezzi-D original)
1 1/2 c. milk chocolate, finely chopped
1 T. brewed coffee
2 T. sweetened condensed milk
2 T. Bailey’s Irish cream
1/4 c. almonds, toasted and chopped, divided
1 c. bittersweet chocolate, roughly chopped

1.  Heat 2 cups of water in a small saucepan over medium high heat.  Place a small metal bowl on top of the saucepan, making sure not to let it touch the water.  Add the milk chocolate and brewed coffee and stir until it is just melted.  Remove from heat.

2.  Stir in half of the toasted almonds mixing well.  Add in the sweetened condensed milk and Bailey’s Irish Cream and stir until the mixture begins to harden.  Form into a ball and place in the refrigerator for 5 minutes.
3.  Remove the ganache from the refrigerator and form into 1 inch balls.  Place the balls on a cookie sheet and place in the freezer for 15 minutes.

4.  Meanwhile return the saucepan of water to medium high heat with a metal bowl on top.  Add in half of the bittersweet chocolate and stir until melted.  Remove from heat and stir in the remaining chocolate.  Remove the ganache balls from the freezer and dip in tempered chocolate.  Place each on a sheet of waxed paper and sprinkle with remaining toasted almonds.

Strawberry Lime Pate de Fruit (adapted from about.com )
3 c. fresh strawberries
1 T. lime juice
2 c. sugar
1 t. lime zest
1 1/2 T. powdered pectin

1.  Line an 8 x 8 baking dish with parchment paper and then spray with cooking spray.  Set aside.

2.  Put the strawberries in a food processor and process until pureed.  Place the strawberry puree in a large saucepan and add lime juice, lime zest, and 1/2 c. sugar.  Heat over medium high heat, placing a candy thermometer in the pan.

3.  Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture reaches 140 degrees.  Add the remaining sugar and pectin and lower the heat to medium.

4.  Continue stirring frequently until the temperature reaches 200 degrees.  Begin stirring constantly until the mixture reaches 225 degrees.  This will take 15-30 minutes.  Once the mixture reaches 225 degrees lower the heat and continue stirring for 2 minutes.

5.  Pour the strawberry mix into the prepared pan, smoothing the top.

6.  Allow to set for at least 3-4 hours, or until firm.  Use a knife and cut into squares.  Roll each piece in granulated sugar and put in an air tight container.  The candy will keep for 1 week in the refrigerator.

BonBons filled with Salted Caramel and Cinnamon Vanilla Caramel (technique from Daring Bakers hosts, caramel sauce is my own recipe)
8 oz. milk chocolate
20 wrapped caramels
1 t. sea salt
1/2 c. sweetened condensed milk
2 T. butter
1 t. vanilla extract
1/2 t. cinnamon

1.  Heat water in a small saucepan over medium high heat.  Place a metal bowl over top of the saucepan and place half the milk chocolate in the bowl.  Stir until completely melted.  Remove from heat and stir in remaining chocolate to temper the chocolate.

2.  Using a ladle, spoon chocolate over top of two chocolate molds.  Tap the chocolate around the molds to coat the bottom and all sides and then turn the molds upside down over top of the bowl.  Use a scraper and scrape the excess chocolate off the mold so only the wells are covered in chocolate.  Allow to cool and harden.
3.  Meanwhile, unwrap the caramels and place them in a small saucepan along with the butter.  Heat over medium heat until completely melted, stirring frequently.  Remove from heat and stir in the sweetened condensed milk.
4.  Separate the caramel into two dishes.  In one dish mix in the sea salt.  In the other dish stir in the vanilla and cinnamon.  Fill one of the molds with the salted caramel and the other with the cinnamon vanilla caramel.  Let sit for 10 minutes to firm up.
5.  Take a teaspoon and spoon the tempered chocolate on top of each well in the mold to completely cover the filling.  Tap to remove air bubbles.  Place in the refrigerator for 10-20 minutes or until the chocolate has hardened.  Remove from the refrigerator and gently unmold.

Comments

  1. I have bookmarked your original here, the Baileys truffles! Unique and tasty. Glad you had fun with the challenge and good luck on winning the prize!

  2. I love your baileys original recipe. All your candies look great though!

  3. Wow I was never a sweet tooth person but these truffles makes me drool!

  4. Great job on this months challenge, all of your candies look so good!

  5. Wow! These look so good! Super creative recipes! Seriously yummy looking candies!

  6. Your Baileys nut truffles sound delicious

  7. Beautiful candies all of them.

    Lisa~~
    Cook Lisa Cook

  8. mmmh! these look sooo yummy:) can’t wait to try these out!! Thanks for sharing.
    hugs
    Manni

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