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good enough to eat edible holiday gift ideas by Christina Da Costa | 1 2 3 4 5 6
continued from page 3.

chocolate truffles* 
(makes about 50 truffles)
*Adapted from Jenny MacKinnel from All Recipes.

This takes a little more work than the vanilla sugar, but don't let the length of the directions discourage you: it's not that bad. If you've got the time, melt chocolate in a double boiler, but if you don't, a microwave is fine.

basic ingredients
1 8-oz. package of cream cheese
3 cups powdered sugar
3 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (the best you can get -- this will make a difference, I use Ghirardelli),

rum, coffee liquor, flavored extracts (vanilla, almond, orange, peppermint, etc.), cocoa powder, sprinkles, toasted coconut, crushed nuts, cinnamon….you get the idea.

1 In a bowl, food processor or stand mixer beat the cream cheese until smooth and add the powdered sugar until it's all blended.
2 While this is going on, melt the chocolate in a double boiler or a microwave. In both cases you must keep an eye on the chocolate and constantly stir to make sure it melts evenly. Slowly add melted chocolate to the mixture, all the while mixing.
3 If you want to make a bunch of different truffles, divide the mixture up into fourths or fifths and add a tablespoon of your favored flavors to each bowl. Let sit in the fridge for about an hour and a half and relax or clean up the kitchen if you're that kind of person.
4 After an hour, pop the bowl out and prepare to get dirty! Take a heaping teaspoon of the mixture and roll it into a ball between your hands. If you're getting fancy -- and you should be, as the variations are part of the fun -- lay out bowls with toppings and roll the balls in nuts, cocoa powder, more sugar, sprinkles, whatever you think would taste good. For example, if you used almond extract, rolling that chocolate in crushed roasted coconut would taste pretty awesome. Not a coconut fan? How about adding mint extract and then rolling the truffles in finely crushed candy canes? If you really want to get fancy, take a scoop of the chocolate mixture, flatten it in your hand and place a nut in the middle. Roll up into a ball and roll in crushed nuts OR in melted bark chocolate.
5 Put finished truffles in fridge to set and take out just before you give. Wrap these up in cellophane or use mini muffin cups for extra panache. Write out what kind of truffle equals what flavor. If you used different toppings for each flavor this should be easy, if not, you can always let people guess. Place lovingly in a box and try not to eat them. Tie it up with a bow to contain yourself. These can stay out for a while, but if your recipient isn't eating them immediately, tell them to put it in the fridge first; they taste better slightly chilled.

keep on skedaddling

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