Earl Grey Truffles
These rich truffles are mellowed with the clean, sweet taste of candied orange peel in the chocolate plus the bergamot scent to the Darjeeling tea that infuses the cream. As always, the finest ingredients are critical to the success of this recipe, and we suggest high-quality bittersweet chocolate, like French Valrhona or Cluizel, Venezuelan El Ray, or Spanish Chocovic. Dusting each creamy square of truffle with pure, bittersweet cocoa powder provides an exquisite counterbalance to the sweetness of the truffle.

Strips of candied peel from one orange, homemade (see procedure below) or store-bought
1/2 cup/100 grams granulated sugar
16 ounces/475 milliliters heavy cream
2 tablespoons/28 grams Earl Grey Imprerial tea leaves
21 ounces/600 grams finely chopped bittersweet chocolate
Bittersweet cocoa powder for dusting the truffles

Make candied peels by cutting strips from one brightly colored orange, making sure no white inner pith is usedd, as the pith will make it bitter. Boil the peel in water for 5 minutes and drain. Boil again in fresh water and drain. make a simple syrup by boiling 1 cup/240 milliliters of water with 1/2 cup/100 grams granulated sugar until clear. Cook the peel for the third time in the simple syrup and allow to drain on a wire rack. Set aside.

In a heavy 2-quart/2-liter saucepan, bring the cream and the tea to a boil. Remove from heat, allow to infuse for about 15 minutes, and then strain through a fine-meshed sieve into a bowl. Add the chocolate and stir lightly with a wooden spoon until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is perfectly smooth. To retain its characteristic dense, fudgy texture, do not aerate the chocolate mixture.

Purée the candied orange peel in a food processor along with approximately 1 cup/240 milliliteers of the chocolate mixture.

Line an 8x1-inch/20x25-centimeter baking sheet with parchment. Pour half of the remaining chocolate mixture into the pan. Pour all of the orange peel and chocolate mixture over the chocolate in the pan and spread evenly with a spatula. Pour the remaining chocolate mixture over this later. Smooth the top with a spatula and cover tightly with baking parchment. Chil until firm, about 2 hours.

With a heavy knife, cut the chilled chocolate unto 72 equal squares. Place on a parchment-lined sheet pan and sift the cocoa powder over the truffles, coating light and evenly. Place in small candy cups if desired and arrange on a platter and refrigerate until 10 minutes before serving. These are best served cold, but not rock solid, as their flavor opens up after a few minutes at room temperature. This recipe makes 72 bite-sized but rich truffles; how many make a serving is up to you!

Note: These may be made a day in advance and kept refrigerated until serving.

This recipe is part of the book Cooking with Tea by Robert Wemischner and Diana Rosen.
Photography by Sysan Bourgoin

Click here for printable version.


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