Hey baby, it’s cold outside and making unusual and sophisticated holiday treats is one of the joys of this time of year.  I have discovered an exciting and sophisticated truffle that showcases intricate tea flavors and wows friends, family, and neighbors.

I have two gastronomical passions in my life – tea and chocolate.  I have an entire pantry filled with canisters of different teas, teapots, water heaters, and cups.  I take a tea break at least five times throughout the day and spend an abundant amount of time talking about, writing about, and buying tea.  I also love chocolate.  I make chocolate from scratch.  I roast the beans, then crack and winnow them, grind them, and then mélange them for two days with organic cocoa butter and cane sugar.  I then temper and mold the chocolate or make fancy confections. 

For the holidays this year, I decided to combine my two passions and make gunpowder green mint tea and dark chocolate truffles to give everyone I know an elegant holiday indulgence.  They so completely satisfied both the tea lover and the chocolate lover in me that I felt compelled to share the recipe.  I am sure it will taste fantastic with store-bought dark chocolate, so making your own chocolate is not required and simplifies the recipe substantially.  They melt in your mouth and explode with tasty tea goodness.

Gunpowder Green Mint Tea Dark Chocolate Truffles

Ganache:
    4 tablespoons loose gunpowder green mint tea
    2 sprigs fresh mint, washed and dried
    9 tablespoons cream
    12 ounces dark chocolate, finely chopped
    6 tablespoons corn syrup
    6 tablespoons butter, softened
    A pinch of salt

To Finish:
    8 ounces dark chocolate, melted
    Dark cocoa powder (as needed)

Method:

  1. In a small sauce pan over a medium heat, cook the tea, mint, and cream until the liquid boils.  Remove it from the heat.  Cover and let it stand 3 minutes.  Strain out the tea and discard.  Let it stand with the fresh mint until the liquid is room temperature.  Strain the cream and discard the mint.  Reserve the cream.
  2. Place the chocolate in a medium-sized bowl.
  3. Combine the cream and corn syrup in a small sauce pan and bring it to a boil.
  4. Add the cream mixture to the center of the chocolate.  Using an immersion blender or a whisk, begin mixing in the center and gradually incorporate the rest of the chocolate and cream into the elastic core of the emulsified ganache.
  5. When all the chocolate and cream have been completely combined, mix in the softened butter and salt.
  6. Cover the ganache with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator for 1/2 hour until the ganache is firm.
  7. Use a melon baller or cookie scoop to make a ball of ganache and place it on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.  Repeat until all ganache is used.
  8. Place the ganache balls in the refrigerator for 1/2 hour until the balls are firm.
  9. Spread a thin layer of cocoa powder on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.
  10. Place a small amount of melted chocolate on the palm of your hand.  Roll the ganache ball in the chocolate and then roll it in the cocoa powder.  Place it in a nice serving dish.  Repeat until all the balls are covered.
  11. Refrigerate the balls until 1/2 hour before serving.  Serve at room temperature.  Makes 50 small truffles or 25 large truffles.