An Ideal Gift, And Delicious
Nothing says "Chappy Chanukah" like a bag of Baileys truffles. Leticia Schwartz/JW
Back in the 1980s and 90s, I was a teenager growing up in Rio de Janeiro and my mother was young, strong willed (like all Jewish mothers) and fashion conscious. She was always concerned that for bar mitzvahs and weddings, I should be as well-dressed as possible. Together, we would shop for shoes, accessories and fabrics. At that time, going to a seamstress was still the thing to do, with many tests and fittings.
The parties were always full of live music and gorgeous clothes and at the end, the hosts would offer tables full of treats and sweets. I was always the first one to dig in. That ritual of eating sweets at the end of the party was always my favorite part.
Once, I tried a Baileys truffle that was so good I just couldn’t stop. It was to die for, melted in your mouth. Of course, I was wearing a light dress – fabric, embroidery and all – and although I ate with a napkin, got myself covered in cocoa powder.
That was probably the beginning of my chocoholism. I remain addicted to this day. When Chanukah approaches I get all excited to turn my kitchen into a chocolate factory. My kids help me box the treats, and my husband keeps circling around us, trying all the candies and giving his opinion on each flavor.
“Why Baileys?” My husband asked me after eating at least three of them. “Because it brings back memories of Brazil,” I said. But also, these truffles bring me the sense of celebration and plenitude that comes over me when I am in my kitchen, with my two kids wearing aprons and their hands dusted in cocoa powder. This year my parents will be here for Chanukah so the whole mishpacha will be in the kitchen, and I will be very careful or my mother will start picking on me, lest I get my dress dirty -- again.
I love to enrobe the truffles into a shell of chocolate, and only then, roll them in cocoa powder. But if you are looking for a short cut (nothing wrong with that), skip that part and roll the ganache directly in cocoa powder. I am sure nobody will complain. My kids don’t.
I developed this recipe with Callebaut and Felchin brands of chocolate because that’s what I had in the house, but feel free to use any other brand of your preference.
These truffles, as you can see from the photograph, make an ideal gift.