Hey, What’s Cookin’?
It’s Thanksgiving week! Whether you will be a host or a guest this Thursday, take a few moments away from thoughts of food and drink and remember to give thanks for all that you have and where you live. Our nation is far from perfect, but I’ve been all over this world and I can tell you for a fact that we as Americans have a lot to be grateful for. A bed to sleep in, a roof over one’s head, fresh water on demand, and 3 guaranteed meals a day are a luxury in many parts of this world. So give thanks for all that you have, along with the freedom to enjoy it.
And speaking of the freedom to enjoy, I sure hope you’re planning on making Thanksgiving dinner this week’s official “Cheat Meal” so you can enjoy (in moderation!) all those once-a-year specialties the loved ones in your life have cooked up. Your Cheat Meal does include dessert; I’ve even taken the liberty of finding a delicious dessert treat for you to make, share, and enjoy. All the ingredients are okay for you to enjoy on a once-a-week “treat” basis–there’s no white flour, high-fructose corn syrup, or preservatives lurking in these luscious babies! These Chocolate Pecan Truffles are every bit as delicious and satisfying as a slice of chocolate pecan pie–it’s like having the best part (the filling) without all that crust!
Chocolate Pecan Truffles
Based on a recipe by Detoxinista
Makes: approximately 2 dozen truffles
- 1 cup Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1 cup raw pecans
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 cup 70% dark chocolate chips OR 6 oz. of a 70% dark chocolate bar (chopped), for coating
- 2 tbs finely chopped pecans for topping (optional)
- 2 tbs finely chopped unsweetened shredded coconut for topping (optional)
- To a food processor bowl fitted with the S-blade, add the chopped dates, coconut, pecans, vanilla extract, and sea salt; process until a sticky dough is formed.
- Scoop the dough by rounded tablespoons and use your hands to roll into smooth balls. If the mixture does not mold together and seems too dry, add a teaspoon of honey and reprocess.
- Place the balls on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Place the pan in the freezer to set for 30 minutes.
- Melt the cup of dark chocolate chips by placing them in a microwave-safe bowl and microwaving them at 100% power for 20-second intervals. Stir. Microwave for 20-second intervals and stir until completely melted.
- Remove the baking sheet from the freezer. Roll each ball in the melted dark chocolate, then return them to the parchment paper to set. Return chocolate to microwave if it cools too much to coat the truffles.
- Optional: sprinkle some chopped pecans or coconut on top for decoration; do it immediately after dipping the truffle because the chocolate sets quickly on the frozen truffle.
- Return the chocolate truffles to the fridge or freezer until ready to serve. Pop the truffles into attractive mini-muffin paper cups and arrange on a tray to serve.
- For a Double Chocolate Truffle variation, add 1/4 cup cocoa powder to the food processor before processing the ingredients.
- If you do not like pecans, walnuts make an excellent substitution.
Photograph by Detoxinista