My Grama’s Truffle Recipe
Did someone say brandy?
By Laura Carson Miller
My father’s parents were always such an interesting and fun couple. They loved African violets, dogs – they had dachshunds then pugs, cars and cooking. They also had quite the international flair, having lived in both Spain and India with my grandfathers engineering job. My sister and I loved hearing stories about their daily adventures in both places. It gave us a worldly view early on in life. A real bonus for a young person, then and now.
My grandmother loved to cook and I would look forward to meals at their house. She was also a mean baker and would whip up the most wonderful desserts. Family, friends and neighbors, and of course their fellow church members loved her chess cake, pralines and one of my faves, her pot de crème. If we weren’t getting pot de crème, her truffles also ticked all the yummy boxes, rich, chocolaty, homemade and downright delicious.
Today I’m sharing her recipe with you, exactly as it’s written, in pencil mind you, on the lined index card she placed in the recipe box she gave me shortly after I got married in 1991. Total side note: because I am ever the researcher – it’s a big part of being a writer – and because I inherited the detective gene from my Mum – I looked up the company stamped on the bottom of the recipe box, Syndicate Mfg. Co. – design copyrighted, btw, to find that various designs are selling on Etsy. The one I have is the strawberry design and my sister has the one above it.
Okay, here’s the recipe, exactly as it’s written.
BC’s Amazing Truffles (my title)
1 – 12oz package of semi sweet chocolate chips
1 can Eagle Brand milk plus enough regular milk to make 1 ½ cups
4 Tblsp margarine
1 ½ cups finely chopped blanched almonds
2 Tblsp vanilla or rum extract OR 1Tblsp brandy
½ Tsp salt
Melt chocolate and margarine in double boiler over hot not boiling water. Stir in remaining ingredients and mix well. Cool until firm enough to roll into small balls. Grease hands with margarine. Roll balls in chocolate sprinkles, finely chopped almonds or instant cocoa mix. Store tightly covered.
Now that you have eye balled this recipe, exactly as it’s written, you clearly understand why I keep emphasizing exactly as it’s written, right?No one in their right mind uses margarine anymore (is margarine still available in stores??) and instant cocoa mix is not something I would think to roll truffles in but I have tried and it and, really, it’s delightful. Eagle Brand milk is sweetened condensed milk, which give the truffle a richness and heavenly body you won’t get without it. I’ve made these truffles using coconut oil (2 tablespoons) and real butter, each variation is super tasty! I’ve experimented with lots of options in which to roll the balls as well. Finely chopped dried cherries and toasted hemp seeds – separately – not both on one ball – are unique and provide great flavor and texture. I also mix ground Vietnamese cinnamon and a little powdered sugar together and roll away. There are endless options. Here’s a parting tip: these are SUPER DUPER with the brandy.