My mom calls me the Queen of the Slapdash. It was a nickname that I earned way back in middle school and it stuck. I’m not a details kind of gal, and if you look up antonyms for meticulous, you’ll probably find ‘Katie’.
Sadly, my culinary style is much the same as my middle school homework style. I don’t take actual short cuts (canned frosting and t.v. dinners are not my thing), but I do love to pass off a seriously easy recipe as a feat of magnificent proportions. I had long been terrified of candy, chocolate, and confections in general because attention to detail is key when a matter of one or two degrees can mean the difference between buttery caramel and a beeping smoke alarm. But over the past year I’ve tackled my fears, and found that not all confections have to be so difficult to make.
Not that you shouldn’t tell everyone that these lovely truffles took days of incredible patience to prepare. People will believe you. They are that good. And they are adorable enough to qualify for a fake-out. These beautiful chocolate wonders are a great hostess gift for that friend who invites you for dinner but refuses to let you bring anything.
They key to ease here is making sure that your goat cheese is softened before you start – you don’t want lumpy ganache. And, of course, use great chocolate. I went for Callebaut, but take my advice and splurge on the best you can find. The marriage of chocolate and goat cheese is surprisingly mild and just a bit mysterious. I neglected to mention to Jeff that the ganache was made with goat cheese (he hates goat cheese – sometimes I just don’t understand how we ended up together). He munched away, enjoying the creamy texture and “that something, what is that something?” which I refused to divulge. I love the almond flavor with the tang of the goat cheese, but you could certainly go for hazelnut instead, which would be wonderful and earthy.
I submitted the recipe for these lovely truffles to the Ile de France Cheese Recipe Contest. Go vote for my truffles here! (scroll down to find the nutty goat cheese chocolate truffles recipe)
Nutty Goat Cheese Truffles
Makes about 2 dozen truffles
4 ounces goat cheese
8 ounces dark chocolate, chopped and divided
2 tablespoons almond liqueur
1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted and finely chopped
Bring the goat cheese to room temperature. Melt half of the chocolate on low power in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds (or over a double boiler). Adding a the chocolate to the cheese just a spoonful at a time, stir together the goat cheese and the melted chocolate until very smooth. Use the back of a spoon to work the goat cheese into the chocolate. Mix the almond liqueur into the chocolate mixture. Chill one hour. Remove from the refrigerator and scoop into balls. Roll the scooped truffles in your hands to make them perfectly round. Put the chopped almonds on a flat plate. Melt the remaining chocolate. Coat each truffle with a small amount of chocolate (the best way to do this is by dipping a large spoon in the chocolate and then rolling the truffle in the spoon). Quickly transfer each coated truffle to the nuts and roll to coat. Chill at least 30 minutes. Remove the truffles from the refrigerator 15 minutes before serving. They will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days in an airtight container.