Peppermint Mocha Truffles

There’s something a little bit magical about the combination of chocolate, coffee and mint. Each of those flavours makes the others better – the addition of coffee makes the chocolate taste fabulously high quality, the richness of chocolate makes the flavour of mint sparkle and zing, and the freshness of the mint is the perfect counterpoint to the darkness of the coffee. Bringing them all together in the velvety smoothness of a truffle makes a sumptuous treat.

Ingredients
140g dark chocolate
140ml double cream
25g salted butter
1 tsp peppermint essence
1 tbsp good quality ground coffee
Cocoa powder, for dusting

Makes about 15 truffles

Making truffles is a pretty simple process, but it needs plenty of time. Once you’ve made the mixture up, it needs to go in the fridge for at least four hours to make it nice and firm, otherwise it’ll be really hard to shape.

Start by measuring out the chocolate, butter and cream into a bowl and microwaving in thirty second bursts, stirring well each time, until you have a smooth, well-incorporated mixture. If you don’t have a microwave, you can do this in a bain marie, but to be honest, I would just do it in a non-stick saucepan over a low heat and keep an eye on it. Working with chocolate doesn’t have to be a headache at all if you just pay attention!

Next, add the peppermint essence and the ground coffee (please don’t use instant coffee…) and mix through well, then cover with a plate and put in the fridge for at least four hours.

When the mixture is really nice and solid, you can make the truffles. You need to do this by hand so things will get a bit messy – so get everything ready first! Sprinkle a plate with a good layer of cocoa powder, ready for coating the truffles, and have another plate ready to put the finished version on. Use a teaspoon to scoop out some mixture and roll between your palms to make a truffle about the size of a marble. Roll in the cocoa powder and set aside, then repeat (quickly) until you run out of mixture.

For the finishing touch, pop the truffles into a clear cellophane bag and tie with a pretty ribbon. Store in the fridge.