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Smooth and sinfully rich ... with chocolate tartufo.

Smooth and sinfully rich . . . white chocolate tartufo

Incredibly smooth, sinfully rich, white chocolate tartufo is a dessert lover's dream come true. Digging into this frozen Italian confection reveals a toasted hazelnut filling laced with hazelnut liqueur. You can also make the filling with pistachios or almonds.

The dessert takes time to prepare, but the effort is worth it. Tartufo can be made ahead and kept frozen for up to 3 weeks.

White Chocolate Hazelnut Tartufo

3/4 cup hazelnuts

3 large egg yolks

1/3 cup each sugar and water

9 ounces white chocolate

1 cup whipping cream

2 tablespoons hazelnut-flavor liqueur

Place hazelnuts in an 8- or 9-inch-wide pan. Bake in a 350| oven until lightly toasted beneath skins, shaking pan occasionally, 18 to 20 minutes. Pour nuts onto a towel and rub with cloth to remove most of the skins; lift out nuts and set aside.

In a deep bowl with an electric mixer, beat egg yolks until light colored and thick. Next, combine sugar and water in a 1- to 1 1/2-quart pan. Bring to boiling on high heat. Cook until the syrup reaches 234|; to read, tilt pan so syrup covers end of thermometer. At once, beat yolks on high speed and pour syrup into them in a slow, steady stream (avoid beaters). Continue to beat until mixture is very thick and has cooled, 3 to 5 minutes.

Place 6 ounces white chocolate, cut into chunks, in top of a double boiler set over simmering water. Stir chocolate occasionally just until melted. Immediately pour into egg yolk mixture and stir to blend thoroughly. Gradually add cream, beating rapidly until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Fill 6 muffin cups (about 2 1/2-in. diameter) half-full with white chocolate mixture. Measure out 1/2 cup of the remaining white chocolate mixture and set aside. Cover chocolate mixture in the muffin pan and the balance in the bowl and freeze until firm, 3 to 4 hours.

Put the reserved 1/2 cup chocolate mixture, 1/2 cup hazelnuts, and liqueur in a blender or food processor. Whirl until smoothly pureed. Scrape into a small bowl; cover and freeze until firm, 3 to 4 hours.

Using a small ice cream scoop or melon ball cutter, evenly divide frozen hazelnut mixture into 6 balls; set 1 on top of each chocolate-filled muffin cup. Working quickly, scoop equal portions of remaining frozen white chocolate mixture on top of each nut ball. Using back of scoop, pat mixture evenly around top and sides so hazelnut filling is completely enclosed. Return muffin pan to freezer until dessert is firm, about 1 hour.

Finely grate the remaining 3 ounces of chocolate, then mound in the center of a large piece of waxed paper.

Working quickly, run a knife around edge of 1 tartufo in muffin cup to loosen; lift out. Set tartufo in mound of grated chocolate. Place your hands underneath paper and lift up, patting gently, to coat all sides with chocolate. At once set coated ball in a chilled 8- or 9-inch-wide pan and put in freezer. Repeat to coat remaining tartufo with chocolate; do not let balls touch. If uncoated tartufo gets too soft to handle, freeze until firm. Freeze coated tartufo until firm, at least 1 hour.

Serve, or cover airtight and store up to 3 weeks. To present, coarsely chop remaining hazelnuts and sprinkle onto each ball. Makes 6 servings.

White Chocolate Almond Tartufo

Follow the directions for white chocolate hazelnut tartufo (recipe precedes), but instead of hazelnuts use 3/4 cup whole blanched almonds and toast in a 350| oven for about 10 minutes. Substitute almond-flavor liqueur for the hazelnut liqueur.

White Chocolate Pistachio Tartufo

Follow the directions for white chocolate hazelnut tartufo (recipe precedes), but instead of hazelnuts use 3/4 cup roasted unsalted shelled pistachios (about 1 1/2 cups nuts in the shell). Omit toasting step. Substitute orange-flavor liqueur for the hazelnut liqueur.

Photo: Scoop frozen tartufo onto nut ball, then pat around filling and freeze. Below, use waxed paper to press grated chocolate onto sides; freeze again

Photo: Decadent white chocolate tartufo yields sweet surprise: intense hazelnut filling accented with hazelnut liqueur
COPYRIGHT 1987 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1987 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:includes recipes
Date:Nov 1, 1987
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