Truffles and Sponge Candy – August Daring Bakers Challenge

The August 2011 Daring Bakers’ Challenge was hosted by Lisa of Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drive and Mandy of What the Fruitcake?!. These two sugar mavens challenged us to make sinfully delicious candies! This was a special challenge for the Daring Bakers because the good folks at http://www.chocoley.com offered an amazing prize for the winner of the most creative and delicious candy!

 

For this month’s challenge, I’m sticking with the positive (especially since the failed part of the treats was my fault… you see, there’s a significant difference between teaspoons and tablespoons and confusing those things can make food, um, taste bad).

 

These truffles were de-licious, and super simple to make. The recipe also suggests tweaking it to make it your own, so I added earl grey tea, which made for a lovely aftertaste.

 

More details on my success and failure on the next page.

Let’s start with the positive!

 

The truffles were very straightforward. To make the ganache, I heated heavy cream and stirred it into cut milk chocolate

When it was smooth and completely mixed together, I stirred in the contents of two bags of earl grey tea

Done! The ganache went into the fridge to firm up, about an hour. After the chocolate was suitably firm, I used a small cookie scoop to form the ganache into uniform sizes. I lined them up on parchment,  then they went back into the fridge for another 20 minutes.

 

In the meanwhile, I tempered the chocolate. I used dark chocolate, heating 2/3rds of the chocolate in a double boiler, then adding the final 1/3 off the heat, monitoring the temperature the entire time. To be honest, my thermometer was kind of a piece, but it still seemed to look okay. The chocolate was very shiny.

 

For 1/2 the truffles, I used wooden skewers to dip into the chocolate, put them back onto the parchment, topped with a sprinkle of kosher salt, then into the fridge for the chocolate to harden

The other half was rolled in unsweetened cocoa powder

And for the sponge candy… well, I have to say, they’re certainly easy enough to make.

 

I greased, parchmented, and greased again a springform pan

Then, I mixed together sugar, corn syrup, water, and vanilla. It was in this step where the wheels fell off the bus

Notice the copious amounts of, um, brown stuff? That would be the two TABLEspoons of vanilla extract, as opposed to the two TEAspoons the recipe called for. I decided to forge ahead, hoping it would make the candy taste more delicious (note: it made the candy taste more burnt)

 

But,  ever the optimist, I brought the mixture to the proper temperature and a mad boil

I added the baking soda and whisked. It frothed up like it was supposed to (very fun!) and poured it into the pan

It sat out for an hour or two, firming up and cooling down. I then broke it into pieces, tried it, felt sad, photographed it, tried it again, felt sad again, and comforted myself with a truffle.

 

For posterity’s sake, here’s what the final product looked like

Here’s the details on both recipes, plus a few more:

Chocolate and Candy DB August 2011

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