Step 1: Gather the Goods
1 14-16 ounce (350-400g) package of vanilla sandwich cookies
1 8 ounce (224 g) package of cream cheese softened
1 or more .15 ounce (4.2 g) fruit flavored drink mix packets
2 11 ounce (275 g) packages of chocolate chips (white, milk, or dark)
Powdered (confectioners or icing) sugar
Optional: sprinkles, nuts, shredded coconut, other topping type goodies
blender or food processor
1 or more medium bowls (depending on how many flavors you make)
wax paper or silicone mat
double boiler (a glass bowl and saucepan)
Step 2: Making the Truffle Base
Take all the cookies*, including the filling, and use a blender or food processor to crush them to a fine crumb consistency. It helps to give the blender pitcher a good shake two or three times during this process to get all the cookies crushed.
*If you had a 16 ounce package to start with, leave four cookies out.
Empty the crushed cookies into a large bowl and add the softened cream cheese. I find that breaking the cream cheese into 4-6 lumps makes it easier and faster to mix in.
Mix together the cookies and cream cheese until it is a uniform color and consistency.
Step 3: Flavoring the Truffles
Separate the truffle base into equal parts into bowls depending on how many flavors you will be making.
Use the drink mix to flavor the base. The amount used will vary on the amount of base you are adding it to as well as how strong you want the flavor. If you like the filling a little tart, use more mix. If you make it too tart, just add small amounts (1 tablespoon at a time) of powdered sugar to the filling until it is to your liking.
The drink mix adds not only flavor but color to the filling. Pretty!
Step 4: Preparing the Truffles
Prepare the baking sheet with waxed paper or a silicone mat.
Coat your hands with powdered sugar to prevent the truffles from sticking.
Using your hands, roll the mixture into 1 inch balls and place on the baking sheet.
Give the balls a chill in the freezer for 45 minutes to an hour.
Step 5: Tempering the Chocolate
Why can’t I just use the microwave to melt the chocolate?
Well, you could use the microwave, but there is a good chance you might over heat your chocolate and ruin it. Even if you don’t overheat the chocolate, it is very difficult to accurately heat the chocolate to the correct temperature in order for it to set up properly (temper) when it has cooled. If you don’t temper your chocolate, it can melt too easily and/or develop bloom (cocoa butter seeping out forming white spots). You don’t want ugly or melty truffles after all your hard work!
Put 1 inch of water in the saucepan and put the glass bowl into the saucepan, making sure the bottom does not touch the water. Voila! You now have a double boiler.
Bring the water to a boil and then remove from heat. Make sure that the bowl is completely dry as any moisture in the bowl may cause the chocolate to seize. Yuck!
Add one bag of chocolate chips to the bowl of the double boiler. Using a rubber spatula, stir the chocolate until it is just melted smooth. Chocolate should never be heated to more than 120°F (49°C).
Remove the bowl from the double boiler (be careful not to get any water into the bowl!). Add in the other bag of chocolate chips and stir until they are melted.
Put the bowl back onto the double boiler (be careful not to get any water into the bowl!) and bring the temperature of the chocolate back up to its tempering temperature. (Say that five times fast!)
white chocolate 80-82°F (27-28°C)
milk or semi-sweet chocolate 86-88°F (30-31°C)
dark chocolate 88-90°F (31-32°C)
Once you have reached the tempering temperature, you will need to maintain the temperature of the chocolate within that zone while you are dipping your truffles.
Step 6: Dipping the Truffles
Remove the truffles from the freezer-it is best to work in batches so your truffles stay nice and chilly.
Set up the cooling rack over a piece of wax paper, foil, or a silicone mat.
Using two forks, dip each truffle into the chocolate making sure to evenly coat them and allow most of the excess chocolate to drip off.
Place the truffle onto the cooling rack and sprinkle with your choice of topping before the chocolate sets. Alternatively, you could add a decorative drizzle of chocolate after they have set.