Lent is Almost Here!

Planning on your last treat before Lent yet? Giving up chocolate seems to be a popular ‘give up’ for many people. Here is a win/win situation. Make yourself a batch of Chocolate Truffles for Mardi Gras to brace yourself for those forty ‘no chocolate’ days ahead. It gives you a chance to try the recipe and a recipe to think about making for Easter.

Easy Chocolate Truffles

1 1/2 sticks butter (margarine will NOT due!)
1/4 cup baking cocoa powder
1 14-ounce can of sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoons of rum (You can use flavoring extract)
1 cup finely chopped pecans – which will be divided.

Melt the butter in a pot and stir in the cocoa until combined and smooth. Stir constantly while slowly pouring in the condensed milk. Continue cooking and stirring for about five minutes more until smooth and thickened a bit. Remove from the stove and stir in the rum and 3/4 cup of the chopped pecans.

Pour mixture into a baking pan and refrigerate until mixture is firm enough to hold its shape. With either a small cookie scoop or tablespoon, remove spoonfuls of the mixture from the pan and roll into small balls -3/4th to 1-inch balls. Roll each ball into the rest of the chopped pecans and place on a plate and refrigerate at least two hours before serving.

Idea:

You don’t have to go with rum and pecans. Walnuts, hazelnuts, and almonds can be very good, too. There are a lot of extract or alcohols you can flavor it with, too. Mint chocolate?

If you don’t like nuts, make the balls a bit smaller and roll them in colorful cake decorations. You can usually find the nonpareils in holiday colors in the baking section of most store.

I like to add a bit of very finely chopped fresh orange zest to the chocolate/nut mixture.

Really want to be fancy, get some candy coating in white or chocolate and dip your refrigerated candy in that and then the colorful outer decorations. You could even drizzle a contracting bit of coating on top of that.

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