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Truffles with Glazed

Did you think your days of eating rich chocolate truffles were over? These rich treats are every bit as good as their heart-clogging counterparts. This recipe suggests several variations depending on your favorite chocolate enhancements. Enjoy a decadent treat and eat them guilt-free - no gluten, no dairy and no cholesterol in these! Mmmmmm!

Kirch Soaked Cherry Walnut Cake Truffles

(Makes Two Petite 4” by 1 3/4” Chocolate Cakes -- see recipe on this website)

1/2 cup raw tahini
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup cocoa powder
3/4 cup cherry brandy (Kirsch) (1/2 cup for soaking / 1/4 cup for truffle base)
48 whole dried cherries
1/4 cup toasted walnuts

Soak cherries overnight in 1/2 cup of Kirsch

Toast walnuts at 350 degrees for 7 minutes.  Chop. Take two petite chocolate cakes and crumble them into a mixing bowl.  In a separate bowl, combine tahini, maple syrup, brandy and cocoa powder.  Microwave for one minute or until warm enough to whisk until fully blended and smooth.  Mix with the crumbled cakes.  Form balls with a cherry in the center. Put on parchment paper on a cookie sheet and refrigerate 2 hours.

Chocolate Coating

One 3 oz bar of rich dark chocolate

Chop chocolate.  Place chocolate in a double boiler.  Heat it until it reaches 110 degrees.  Remove from double boiler and sit on heating pad.  Take 1/3 of the chocolate out and place on Silpat or non-stick surface.  With a flat edge, temper the chocolate until the surface goes from shiny to dull.  Put the chocolate back in the pan with the rest of the chocolate and mix with a spoon.  Take temperature of chocolate.  It should be between 86 and 90 degrees.  Keep it at that temperature (on the heating pad) while working with it. 

Hand-Roll Method:

Place one teaspoon of chocolate in palm.  Roll chilled truffle in palm until coated.  Roll off onto parchment.  Chill again until chocolate is firm.  (Use disposable gloves to avoid getting fingerprints on chocolate.)

Mold Method

Place one teaspoon in each mold.  Move mold around to coat sides. Refrigerate mold for a few minutes until chocolate is set.  Fill with small ball of truffle base with a cherry in the middle.  Cover with chocolate.  Chill in the refrigerator until chocolate is set.  Pop truffles out of the mold. 

Truffles can be stored up to one week in an air tight container.  They can be stacked with waxed paper or plastic wrap dividers. 

Glazed Almonds

1 cup raw almonds
¼ cup Agave Nectar

Set out all utensils you will need (a stirring spoon, a fork for separating, a candy rack and cookie sheet underneath, a candy thermometer.)

Place ¼ cup Agave Nectar in pot.  Heat to the soft-ball stage (234 degrees) and then stir in almonds.  Continue heating to 305 degrees, stirring constantly.  Turn out on candy rack. Separate and let nuts cool.  The outside will be coated in a shell of glossy sugar.