Update: I’m advancing to the next round! Thanks for your support, everyone!
Before I had left for Singapore, I had posted my first entry for the Marx Foods Ridiculously Delicious Challenge. Well, guess what – I advanced, wheee!! I was super excited for Round 2, which featured a “mystery box” (oooOOOoooh) of eight ingredients.
My mission (I chose to accept it): Use 2 of the 8 ingredients in an original dish.
I bet you’re wondering what the mysterious box contained – well wonder no further:
As a huge fan of the mixing sweet with other flavors (salty, spicy, sour, etc.), I decided to make some spicy cherry truffles using the dried tart cherries and the Szechuan peppercorns. The tart cherries have a pleasant tang just as their name implies, without being cloyingly sweet, while the peppercorns offer more of a tingly mouth feel than burning heat. Mmm mm mmm! Are you intrigued yet?
You will need:
1. First, rehydrate the cherries.
As per Marx Food’s guidelines here, place the cherries in a small bowl and cover with boiling water for 5-10 minutes. Drain and set aside.
2. Heat cream over low heat until just starting to simmer. Remove from heat immediately.
3. Melt chopped chocolate and butter in a double boiler over low heat. Once melted, remove from heat.
My family bought me a Disney cutting board set. So yes, I’m chopping chocolate on Mickey’s butt.
My double boiler consists of a bowl-on-a-pot setup.
4. Pour heated cream over chocolate mixture and let stand for 1 minute. Then gently stir until combined. Spread mixture onto shallow dish (to facilitate chilling) and refrigerate mixture for 1 hour.
5. Meanwhile, toast peppercorn in a pan over low heat for 3 minutes. Let cool and grind with mortar and pestle.
I admit, I thought of recipes where I could use my cute red mortar/pestle
6. Once chocolate is cooled, take 1 tbsp of chocolate and flatten into a circle. Place cherry in the middle and wrap chocolate around the fruit, shaping into a ball. Lay truffles out on parchment and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
7. Combine cocoa powder and ground Szechuan peppercorn. Dip truffles in mixture, coating completely.
The peppercorn is quite potent, so just a touch will do! To mix things up, I dipped some in cocoa powder/peppercorn and sprinkled just the ground peppercorn on others. I’m daring like that.
These truffles tasted awesome (if I do say so myself, ha!) – the quality of the ingredients definitely played a huge part in that! If you enjoyed this recipe, please support me and VOTE for BigAppleNosh in the Ridiculously Delicious Challenge!
Can you handle the heat? Are you a spicy food person or no?