Monday, October 19, 2009

So close yet so far away. The differance between chocolate truffles with ganache filling and the popular cake ball.

This past week I was asked to make truffles, being rainy, humid, and rather nightmarish outside, I decided to make cake balls a new popular solution to the look of truffles, but the taste is VERY different. Still, labor wise I will take the cake balls any day of the week over truffles. I can charge less more like $1.00 -1.75 each instead of $2.25-2.75 each truffle the preparation is similar but the cost is cheaper on a cake ball, and the yield of the recipe is much better in a cake ball but the flavor... OH the sweet flavor, the melt in your mouth out of this world( yes, I am a chocolate truffle snob) is SO much better in a chocolate truffle! It boils down to how much do you want to spend? My truffles are $90.00 for 36 and my cake balls are for the budget minded 54.00 for 36.

These are my truffles filled with melt in your mouth ganache and decadent flavorings.

These are my cake balls much different texture inside more like cake because it is CAKE! Not silky smooth melt in you mouth ganache, but still yummy none the less.

So if you are a chocolate truffle snob like I am cake ball truffles may not work for you. But please understand what you are paying for is pure quality chocolate mixed with heavy cream and butter and premium flavorings. You are paying for the tempering of the chocolate, the setting up of the ganache, the hand dipping of that ganache after it has been scooped, and hand rolled into balls. Dipped truffles take me at least 24 hours for me to make right.

Which do you like better? Are you a truffle snob like I am or do you like the cake balls better?
Enjoy the recipes of both.

Cake ball recipe:
One cake batch(mix or scratch you pick)
16 ounces icing
2 pounds chocolate coating or bark

Bake cake
Let cool to warm
crumble cake
mix in 16 ounces of icing until well mixed
let chill for at least 3 hours
scoop out with a cookie dough scoop
Roll into balls
Freeze for 20 minute
Heat dipping chocolate according to the directions
dip your cake balls one at a time until dipped.
let the Chocolate set up
Then eat

Chocolate truffles Food network recipe
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 bars (8 ounces) bittersweet chocolate baking bars, broken in 1/4-inch pieces recommended: Ghirardelli)
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/3 cup Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa


In a small saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer. Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate and butter. In a medium sized skillet, bring 1/2 inch of water to a slow simmer. Set the saucepan in the skillet over low heat. Stir mixture just until chocolate has completely melted. Remove from heat. Pour the chocolate mixture into a shallow bowl. Cool, cover and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours.

Pour the cocoa into a pie plate. Line an airtight container with waxed paper. Dip a melon baller or small spoon into a glass of warm water and quickly scrape across the surface of the chilled truffle mixture to form a rough 1-inch ball. Drop the ball into the cocoa. Repeat with the remaining truffle mixture. Gently shake the pie plate to coat truffles evenly. Transfer truffles to the prepared container, separating layers with additional waxed paper. Cover tightly and refrigerate up to 2 weeks, or freeze up to 3 months.

Don't coat these in cocoa and you can hand dip them like mine but be sure to temper the chocoalte for best results and if it is raining outside you might want to rent a dehumidifier because chocolate hates water!

Tips on tempering chocolate

Tempering is a method of heating and cooling chocolate in order to use it for coating or dipping.

Proper tempering gives chocolate a smooth and glossy finish. Tempered chocolate will have a crisp snap and won’t melt on your fingers as easily as improperly tempered chocolate.

Properly tempered chocolate is also great for molding candies because the candies will release out of the molds more easily and still retain a glossy finish.

Tempering Methods:

View recipe

Tempering can be accomplished in several different ways, including the following simple methods:

Method 1
Grate or chop the desired amount of chocolate. Place two-thirds of the chocolate in the top pan of a double boiler. Heat over hot, not boiling, water, stirring constantly, until chocolate reaches 110°–115°F.

Place the top pan of the double boiler on a towel. Cool to 95°–100°F. Add the remaining chocolate to the top pan, stirring until melted. The chocolate is now ready to be used for molding candies, coating, or dipping.

Method 2
Starting with a pound of broken chocolate, melt two-thirds of the chocolate over indirect heat, such as in the top pan of a double boiler. Melt just until the chocolate is liquid and smooth (at 110°–115°F). When it is smooth, add the remaining one-third of broken chocolate and heat again until the entire chocolate becomes smooth.

Pour the chocolate onto a marble or laminate surface. Using a spatula, scrape and stir the chocolate across the surface to smooth and cool it. When the chocolate cools to 80°–82°F, return it to the top pan of the double boiler. Place over hot, not boiling, water.

Heat and stir constantly, until it reaches 87°–91°F. Remove the top pan of the double boiler. The chocolate is now ready to be used for molding candies, coating, or dipping.

Tips for Tempering

  • Do not heat above 130°F since chocolate, especially milk chocolate, is very sensitive to heat and will scorch or seize easily.
  • Be sure no liquid gets into the chocolate. This will cause clumping or seizing.

1 comment:

Gabriella said...

Dear CakesbySara, your cake balls look fantastic! OMG! Incredible presentation. Loved your site, very professional. Photos were crisp and clear. Recipes concise and easy to read. I shall be back for a bite of more.
Thank you for sharing.
Cheers, Gaby
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