Real chocolate truffles are made from a mixture of cream, egg yolks, chocolate and butter that must be kept refrigerated. Unfortunately, genuine truffles aren't sold at stores because of their short shelf life and can only be bought at artisan candy shops. These melt-in-your-mouth artisan truffles can be pricey, but they're inexpensive and surprisingly easy to make at home. Truffles are traditionally made with bittersweet chocolate. However, if you prefer a sweeter truffle, you can make your own milk chocolate truffles.
Soften the butter by bringing it to room temperature or heating it for a few seconds in the microwave. Add 1/4 cup confectioner's sugar and mix it together until creamy. Add the egg yolks and beat until it's thoroughly mixed.
Chop the chocolate into small pieces and mix it into the butter, egg yolk and sugar mixture.
Bring the cream just to a boil over medium heat in a small saucepan. Stir constantly while you heat the cream to prevent burning.
Pour the boiling cream over the pre-mixed ingredients and stir thoroughly until the chocolate is completely melted.
Place the mixture into the refrigerator to solidify it completely. This will take about 2 hours. Chill the melon baller or ice cream scoop in the freezer while you wait.
Put about a cup of mixed cocoa powder and confectioner's sugar in a bowl. For a fairly sweet coating, use a 1:1 ratio of cocoa and sugar. If you want the traditional bittersweet coating, use straight cocoa powder. Adjust this to suit your taste.
Use the chilled melon baller or ice cream scoop to make balls of the chocolate filling, and roll in the cocoa and confectioner's sugar mixture. You can put the bowl of filling inside a larger bowl of ice to keep it chilled while you work. If it becomes too soft and sticky, return it to the refrigerator for 15 minutes before continuing.
Store your truffles in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
You can use any kind of milk chocolate, but baking chocolate is the highest-quality milk chocolate readily available. Milk chocolate chips or (plain) milk chocolate candy bars also work well. If the truffles are too sweet, you can reduce or eliminate the confectioner's sugar or use semi-sweet chocolate instead. To make flavoured truffles, add 1 tsp flavouring extract or 1 tbsp flavoured liqueur to the filling before adding the hot cream. For a Mexican twist on this recipe, add 1 tsp cinnamon to the filling before you pour in the hot cream.
The egg yolks may not be completed cooked by the hot cream. Young children, pregnant women, elderly people and people with impaired immune systems are at increased risk of becoming ill from eating uncooked eggs. Consider using pasteurised eggs for increased safety.