I have a pretty terrible addiction to chocolate, and all sweets really. That’s why my favorite part of Valentine’s Day is all the delicious concoctions bakeries, desserteries, and restaurants come up with around the holiday. For those of you who don’t want to break the bank buying every cake, cookie, and pie in sight (like me), we found this delectable recipe for vegan dark chocolate cherry walnut truffles. These DIY truffles are great as a gift for whoever your date may be, a surprise for your co-workers (and then they’ll ALL want to be your valentine), or just a drool-worthy treat for yourself.
Yields 23-24 truffs.
1 cup walnut halves, finely chopped and toasted
1 cup dried tart cherries
2 tbsp agave nectar (or other liquid sweetener)
1.5 cups of your favourite vegan chocolate chips
3/4 cup full-fat coconut milk (use the cream from the top of the can)
1/4-1/2 tsp kosher salt, to taste (I used 1/2 tsp)
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut
12 drops red food colouring
Now do this:
1. Preheat the oven to 325F and toast the chopped walnuts for 12 minutes. Set aside.
2. Meanwhile, soak the cherries in a bowl of water for about 10 minutes. Drain and add to food processor (or mini immersion processor like I used) along with 2 tbsp agave or other sweetener. Process until finely chopped.
3. In a medium-sized pot, heat the chocolate chips over low heat, stirring as necessary. Add in the coconut milk and stir well. Add toasted walnuts, cherry mixture, and almond extract. Stir again until combined. Now add the kosher salt to taste. The salt should give the sweetness a bit of a pop. Add a touch more sweetener if necessary to achieve your desired taste.
4. Spoon the truffle mixture into a bowl and place in the freezer, uncovered, for 90 minutes, stirring every half hour. After 90 mins, stir again and transfer bowl to the fridge for another 20 minutes until chocolate is firm and workable.
5. In a small bowl, mix together the coconut and food colouring until pink. When the truffle mixture is firm enough to handle, roll into small balls (you can use wet fingers if necessary- it will be very sticky!) and then roll into coconut mixture until you have about 23 balls. Store in an air-tight container in the freezer or fridge (they will become very soft at room temperature). They should keep for a couple weeks in the freezer in an air-tight container. I like to place mine in a baggy first, then in a container, to prevent freezer burn.
Photos via OhSheGlows