Saturday, July 30, 2011

30 Jul 11 (Sat) - Chocolate Balls

Had one and a half packets of icing sugar left and wanted to try to finish them so went about looking for recipes that make use of icing sugar last Friday before going to my sis’s place for the weekend. Most of the recipes found were making frostings which wasn’t what I wanted. Finally found one on chocolate wine balls that makes used of icing sugar. Looked at the ingredients which consisted of crushed vanilla wafers, red wine, unsweetened chocolate powder, corn syrup and icing sugar and decided to attempt it during the weekend.

Searched for a few more similar recipes and they all required the same basic ingredients with some adding crushed walnuts, some using honey and white wine. So I decided to use the first recipe as my base and do my own variation. As I didn’t have vanilla wafers so replaced it with the rice crisp chocolate biscuits I got from Switzerland during my Europe & Dubai trip in June; didn’t have corn syrup so replaced with maple syrup, didn’t have unsweetened chocolate powder so replaced with semi-sweet chocolate buttons and since my niece and nephew would be eating them, I decided to omit the red wine. Also omitted the icing sugar coz was afraid that it might get too sweet since I would be using semi-sweet chocolate buttons and maple syrup. I have some grounded peanuts and colorful rice crisp left therefore decided to make use of them too.

Woke up early on Saturday morning and started making the preparation. Crushed the biscuits to fine bits in a ziplock bag using the blunt side of the meat tenderizer then added the grounded peanuts and mixed them together. Melted the chocolate buttons with a bit of butter and maple syrup and poured into the biscuits mixture. Combined them using a spatula before using my hand to knead the dough to mixed them properly. After that, tore out some dough and rolled it between the palms to make it into a ball. Coated some of the chocolate balls with grounded peanuts, some with the colorful rice crisp, lined them on a plate, took some photos and then put into the fridge to set.

The amount of ingredients from the original recipe should yield 10 balls but I ended up with 20. The grounded peanuts and colorful rice crisp didn’t stick well to the balls and I wondered why. Maybe because I used butter in the melting of the chocolate? Maybe I didn’t use enough chocolate or maple syrup? Maybe the dough was too dry? Anyway, perhaps next time I could try coating the balls with melted chocolate before coating them with grounded peanuts or colorful rice crisp. After a few hours, took one out to try and it was quite hard. Transferred them to an airtight container and left them in the fridge again. Later the day, took another one out to thaw to room temperature before eating and it was just nice, not too hard.

Chocolate balls

Chocolate balls - close up

Ingredients (Makes 20):
124g rice crisp chocolate biscuits
150g chocolate buttons
10g grounded peanuts
10g butter
2 tsp maple syrup
some grounded peanuts for coating
some colorful rice crisp for coating

1.  Put biscuits into a ziplock bag and crush them to bits
2.  Mix the grounded peanuts with the crushed biscuits
3.  Melt the chocolate buttons, butter and maple syrup on a plate over a pot of boiling water
4.  Pour the chocolate mixture to the biscuits mixture and mix well
5.  Knead the dough with hands to combine them properly
6.  Tear out some dough and roll between the palms to make into chocolate balls
7.  Coat them with either grounded peanuts or colorful rice crisp
8.  Put in the fridge to chill
9.  Thaw to room temperature before serving

---------------- Edited on 1 Aug 2011 ----------------

On Monday night, my niece opened the fridge and saw the box of colorful chocolate balls and asked if she could have them. So told her to put the box on the table to thaw before she went for her shower. My nephew came out and saw the box and took one to eat. He asked what was inside the chocolate balls and so told him. He popped one into his mouth and after that he said “Nice”. I thought I hear him wrongly and asked him to repeat. He said “Nice” and even gave me the thumb up and asked for another one. Then my niece came out from her shower and was shocked to see that there were less chocolate balls in the box. She took a couple of them and put the balance back into the fridge.

Felt happy that this dessert had struck the right chord with the kids.

---------------- Edited on 2 Aug 2011 ----------------

Brought the peanut coated chocolate balls to office for colleagues to try. One of them asked if I had put wine and I said no. She said there’s a taste that she couldn't quite describe but it was nice overall. Another colleague, the one who commented “NICE!” on my previous attempt on the cupcakes, said that it would have tasted better if it was chilled. Explained that the chocolate balls might be too hard if chilled but come to think of it, I guessed what she really meant was that the chocolate balls would have tasted better if they were just taken out of the fridge for a while.

Another three colleagues said that they couldn’t quite taste the chocolate, one of them commented that she tasted more peanuts than chocolate while the other two said the chocolate balls tasted weird, like something is missing. Finally another colleague asked if I put wine or herbs or ginseng in the chocolate balls and I said no. Told her what the ingredients were and she said perhaps next time I should try without the maple syrup.

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