Last Minute Valentines

February 14, 2012

Any holiday that is all about chocolate seems like a good idea to me. My husband and I are chocolate lovers, and every Valentine’s Day I try and find one new home made goodie to surprise him with.

This year I have to admit that the holiday snuck up on me, and Sunday night found me in my kitchen with a bag of bittersweet chocolate, some cream, and the strawberries I was saving for the boy’s breakfast the next morning. The result was a chocolate strawberry truffle that  is so decadent I almost couldn’t share.

I am not a truffle person under most circumstances, but when you want a strong chocolate punch they really do the trick. Most recipes call for around 8 oz of chocolate and 1/2 cup cream. I chose to up both a bit to see if I could get an equally intense but creamier consistency. I really wanted the strawberries to be incorporated into the chocolate, and I decided to test the idea of a puree directly into the ganache. The flavor is subtle, but just enough to remind me that this pairing was made for each other.

Of course it is also the outer layer of a truffle that makes it worth it’s weight, and  two that stuck out (ok, the only two that I had in my pantry, but still that stuck out) were white chocolate and sweet ground chocolate. I have to say that all three of my boys voted the white chocolate as their favorite, and I was right there with them, but the ground chocolate was a close second. All in all the truffles took 10 minutes to prepare, 2 hours to firm up, and 20 minutes to roll. Not bad for a last minute Valentine’s treat.

Bittersweet Chocolate and Strawberry Truffles

12 large truffles 

Truffle
10 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup heavy cream
5-6 strawberries, chopped and pureed

Outer layer
White chocolate, chopped
Chocolate Cocoa

Place the bittersweet chocolate into a glass/heat proof bowl. Heat the cream almost to just a simmer. Remove from heat and slowly pour over the chocolate, whisking as you go. Allow to cool for 5 minutes. Add the pureed strawberry and fold until just combined. Pour into an 8×8 glass pan, cover with foil and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

With a melon baller or table spoon, scrape chocolate into desired size. Roll with hands just until smooth and roll in desired topping. Refrigerate for another 20 minutes or store in an airtight container between sheets of waxed paper.

While eating chocolate is always my favorite way to enjoy it, bathing with it is a very close second. I love cocoa butter. Love it. I use it whenever and wherever possible, and besides smelling good it is a savior for my dry Colorado skin this time of year. My family’s preference has always been our chocolate lavender oil, but this year my skin was in serious need of some exfoliation.

Salt scrubs are a great way to soften and refresh dry skin, and while I normally keep a jar on the side on the bath, this batch was my first adding in cocoa butter to our recipe. Though I love the benefits of cocoa butter, I often wonder about it’s propensity to harden up. I tested this recipe a few weeks back, and I am excited that so far I have seen nothing but a smooth and clear consistency. Avocado and olive oil top the recipe off for a scrub that hydrates skin for hours.

My favorite way to enjoy a salt scrub is in the bath, where I can let the oils soak in and take their full effect. A chocolate salt scrub, a strawberry chocolate truffle, and a glass of champagne is a simple way to celebrate Valentine’s Day, or any day for that matter.

Chocolate Salt Scrub

1.5- 2 cups dead sea or epsom salts
7 oz avocado oil
3 oz olive oil
2 oz cocoa butter
2 oz coconut oil
15 drops of lavender essential oil (optional)

In a heat proof glass bowl set over simmering water (the double boiler method), combine the oils and allow to melt.  Remove from heat and add the lavender essential oil. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Pour over salt, mix, and store.

*I make this recipe in a small enough batch to use within 1 month. 

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Tonya - Plain and Joyful Living February 14, 2012 at 6:54 am

Those truffles look beautiful! We have lots of chocolate going on in our home this morning too.

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Andrea February 14, 2012 at 7:08 am

Wow. You never cease to amaze me with you fabulous made-up-on-the-spot recipes!

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Heather February 22, 2012 at 11:24 am

That is very sweet, thank you :). I think that it is because I am always hungry.

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dominika February 14, 2012 at 10:29 am

oh yes, looks delicious and I might try it soon…on our table today very simple hearts, made with love, from the girls of the family 😉

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Heather February 22, 2012 at 11:24 am

That sounds like the perfect way to celebrate.

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Lynnette February 14, 2012 at 11:13 am

I made some of your chocolate lavender oil for Christmas and it solidified. I must have put too much solid butter and not enough oil. But I found it melts in my hot bath or near the woodstove (with my close attention) and it is warm and cozy to put on after the bath. Thanks for sharing it!

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Heather February 22, 2012 at 11:25 am

I think that is is also a function of where you store the oil that can be an issue. I sometimes do find that in the dead of winter I need to either cut back on how much cocoa butter I use, or try and store it in a warmer spot to keep it liquid. I think that I just love cocoa butter too much to even care when I need to warm it up :).

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6512 and growing February 14, 2012 at 11:57 am

chocolate bath salts? yeah! we made truffles too (apricot-walnut rolled in chocolate), which my kids are convinced are actually called “truffalas” (a la The Lorax).

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Nina - Tabiboo February 14, 2012 at 1:59 pm

Oh my word Heather – two treats rolled in to one. You have certainly made my evening.

Nina x

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Heather February 22, 2012 at 11:26 am

SO glad :)

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Maeghan February 15, 2012 at 7:48 pm

YUM!

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Stephinie February 15, 2012 at 11:47 pm

Oh my goodness. These look divine! I’m in chocolate heaven….

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Angie February 16, 2012 at 6:49 am

Here in the bourbon state, I am obsessed with putting bourbon in chocolate truffles. I only use the good stuff…on the chocolate and the bourbon.
Now, strawberries is something the whole family can eat and not just the adults. :) I will have to try that!

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Heather February 22, 2012 at 11:26 am

And I will have to try adding in bourbon!

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kyndale February 17, 2012 at 10:43 am

I’ve got to try the choc0late scrub!!! ♥

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Angela February 17, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Oh my what lovely Valentines and recipes. Thanks so much for sharing them. I can just smell the chocolate oil and salt scrub. I’m serious!
xo

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Heather February 22, 2012 at 11:26 am

That is what I love so much about it, is the smell. Divine!

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lisa juet March 28, 2012 at 12:49 pm

I saw your truffle recipe over at nothingartificial.blogspot.com — she had it under savannah’s chocolate truffles. I thought you should know. lisa

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lisa juet March 28, 2012 at 12:50 pm

HI. I saw your truffle recipe over at nothingartificial.blogspot.com — she had it under savannah’s chocolate truffles. I thought you should know. lisa

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