I have a confession.
After reading that several of you were going to make the life-changing maple snickerdoodles last night, I got insanely jealous. Because, generous and silly me gave away ALL of the maple snickerdoodles I made last weekend. Besides, I had all the ingredients on hand 😉 Somehow, some way, I limited myself to 2 maple snickerdoodles and pulled out a grueling 50 minutes on the elliptical last night. In: 158 calories…Out: 434 calories. Victorious.
But that’s not where this story ends. The baking bug bit me for the third time this season and after maple snickerdoodles, I made Chocolate Truffles. Oops.
Chocolate Truffles adapted from Tartine Cookbook, seen on A Chow Life
1 lb. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp light corn syrup
5 Tbsp unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup cocoa powder (substitute with topping of your choice e.g. crushed nuts, grated coconut)
Place the chocolate in a heatproof mixing bowl. In a small saucepan, combine the cream and corn syrup and heat to just under a boil. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Allow it to sit for a minute or two. Stir with a rubber spatula in a circular motion until the chocolate melts. Add the butter and stir until it is incorporated. Let the mixture firm up in a cool place 0r place in the refrigerator to speed the process.
Line a baking sheet with parchment or waxed paper. Place small spoonfuls of the batter on the parchment. Roll each piece between your palms into an irregularly shaped truffle and then roll between your palms. Once the truffles are shaped, place the cocoa powder in a shallow bowl or small pile and roll each truffle in the cocoa coating evenly. The truffles will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about 2 weeks. Yield: 55 small truffles.
Nutrition Information (per truffle): 61 calories; 5 g. fat; 4 mg. cholesterol; 2 mg. sodium; 4.7 g. carbohydrate; 0.8 g. fiber; 0.6 g. protein
Result: So rich, creamy, and delicious! Truffles intimidated me, but not anymore! The original recipe involved a pastry bag and whole bunch of (in my opinion) unnecessary steps. These were quick and easy and certainly impressive without too much effort or time. I also used bittersweet chocolate for the first time and it is amazing. I went for the Ghirardelli and mmm mmm mmmm!! Enjoy!
New totals — +2 truffles. 280 calories in goodies consumed and 434 burned. Good thing dinner was a mere 200 calories of chicken noodle soup and raw veggies!!
And lastly, 2009’s favorite holiday cookie: Chocolate & Peppermint Bark Cookies!
Chocolate & Peppermint Bark Cookies from Cookin’ Canuck
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 large egg yolk
6 oz. bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped red & white candies or candy canes (about 3 ounces)
2 oz. high-quality white chocolate
Preheat oven to 350° F. Spray a 13x9x2-inch baking pan with cooking spray and line the bottom of the pan with parchment, letting it hang over the sides of the pan.
In a medium bowl, whisk together all-purpose flour and salt. Set aside. In the bowl of a mixer, beat butter until creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually beat in sugar. Continue to beat for an additional 3 minutes, until the mixture is light and creamy. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in vanilla extract and egg yolk. Turn the mixer to low speed and gradually beat in the flour mixture, until just combined. Do not overmix.
Scatter the dough over the bottom of the prepared pan and gently press it, with slightly moistened fingers, to form a flat layer. Prick all over with a fork.
Bake the cookie layer until golden brown and slightly puffed, and edges are beginning to pull away from the sides of the pan, 25-30 minutes. Place on a cookie rack and immediately sprinkle chopped bittersweet or semisweet (or a combination of the two) over the cookie layer. Let the chocolate sit for about 3 minutes. Using an offset spatula, spread the chocolate into an even layer over the surface of the cookies. Immediately sprinkle 3 ounces crushed red and white peppermint candies, or candy canes, over the chocolate layer.
Place chopped white chocolate in a medium metal bowl set over a simmering pot of water. Stir constantly until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Using a fork, drizzle the white chocolate over the peppermint candies. Chill for approximately 30 minutes.
Gripping the overhanging parchment paper, lift the cookies out of the pan and place on a work surface. Using a large, sharp knife, cut the cookies into irregular pieces (I made triangles). Yield: 40 pieces.
Nutrition Information (per piece): 115 calories; 6.1 g. fat; 5 mg. cholesterol; 18 mg. sodium; 15 g. carbohydrate; 0 g. fiber; 0.7 g. protein
Result: Like I mentioned already, these were last year’s favorite holiday cookie. Co-workers, too, raved about these cookies. They combine a sugar cookie bottom and a peppermint bark-like top. What’s not to love?! These are a bit more labor intensive, but worth the added effort! And they are stunning as a gift or on a cookie platter — they just LOOK like Christmas! Enjoy!
Whew. You’d think I would be sick of sweets, but I’m not. I’ve never loved baking before and now, I can’t get enough of it! Scary!!! Ohio is frigid and baking in my warm kitchen just hits the spot…problem! Why don’t roasted veggie recipes appeal to me like baking? 😉
Mr. Prevention and I are off to Albuquerque this weekend to visit friends — I’ve never been to New Mexico! I have decided to leave my laptop at home and unplug for the weekend. It will give me lots of time on our flights to focus on going through curriculum for the nutrition class I’ll be teaching in a few weeks and maybe even finish the book I started 4 months ago! And when a computer is around, I can be far from productive!
Question: What’s one US state you haven’t been to but want to visit? What US state is your favorite?
P.S. Happy 28th wedding anniversary to my mom and dad!! XOXO!