Developing new recipes can be immensely satisfying, especially if you are a bit of a nerd, but it can also be extremely frustrating when things don’t come together. You end up binning lots of high quality ingredients, the next post’s deadline is looming and you have nothing up your sleeve. This is what was happening when I tried to make margarine-free vegan frosting for these tasty beauties. I did throw the towel in a few times and was that close (pinching my index finger and thumb as I write this) to aborting the mission. In the end, it all came together and not only that, I ended up getting two recipes out of that kitchen experiment. As the frosting came together, I added some rum, maple syrup and coconut milk to the coconut butter leftovers and froze them in an ice-cube mould with the intention of dipping them in chocolate later. That’s how today’s vegan coconut truffles came about.
These are adult chocolates as they contain a bit of rum and are sweet but not Bounty bar sweet. They go like a dream with a shot of strong espresso on a hot day – you have probably heard this from me before as there is nothing sweet I don’t like with an espresso. Because it’s very hot outside, I’ve gone the extra mile and tempered my chocolate before coating. It was my first attempt and I was a bit worried about it as apparently heat (it was 25 degrees here today) can wreak havoc with chocolate (which has reputation for being finicky), but it all went well. Try it if you dare! Otherwise, if it sounds too risky and scary just melt the chocolate over a water bath and cool it down a bit before using.
- makes: 20
- 300 g desiccated coconut*
- 30 ml rum
- 45 ml / 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 200 g dark (70%) chocolate
- Divide desiccated coconut into 3 batches: 230 g, 60 g and 10 g
- Put 230 g of coconut into a food processor and churn until coconut releases its natural oils and turns into a runny coconut butter (see photos). This should take about 10 mins and some scraping of coconut that stays on the processor’s walls is needed from time to time. If you don’t have a super strong food processor, give it a few breaks so that the motor doesn’t overheat.
- In a bowl, mix coconut butter with 60 g of coconut. Mix in rum and maple syrup and incorporate it into the mixture well by pressing it in with a spatula or using your hands.
- Make balls from the mixture by getting a heaped teaspoon of it and first squeezing it with your fist so that the mixture clumps together. Then use your fingers to press the clump into a ball. The mixture won’t be firm enough to roll into balls like you would with chocolate truffles, but you should get a hang of it after one try.
- Put rolled truffles into the fridge (or freezer if you are in a rush) for 2 hours to harden.
- The best thing to do would be to temper the chocolate before dipping the truffles in it as it gives you a superior coating that will stay intact at room temperature. Here are the instructions I followed and they worked well. Otherwise, simply melt the chocolate (on a low heat) over a water bath. Let it cool down before dipping coconut truffles in it with a fork. Sprinkle each truffle with a pinch of coconut from the final, 10 g, batch. Cool in the fridge until the chocolate forms a hard shell.
Notes*If you are tempted to halve the recipe, beware that your processor will find it harder to make butter from a smaller amount of coconut – with a small amount, all the coconut gets stuck to the sides of the food processor. I would advise to make a full batch and freeze half of the recipe for another use.
This lovely hand-embroidered table runner that you can see in the photos, has been kindly lent to us by Love is… – a great Paros (Parikia-based) shop with beautiful home decor items.