Saturday 23 November 2013

Gramps' Truffles

Many years ago when I was in elementary school in South Dakota we had to come up with a business idea.  Mine was called "The Truffle Tree" and was based entirely around a recipe my granddad made with me a few times.  I'm taking no credit for this recipe at all, altering no measurements and not even changing any of the instructions (rare for me!)

My granddad has always been a big part of my life even though I have never really lived close to him.  He used to tell me that a blue pig lived in his coal cellar in his Lancaster house.  He took me dowsing in the round circle in Avebury followed by a trip to the West Kennet Long Barrow the day after the Winter Solstice.  Gramps introduced me to "Jeeves & Wooster", Aled Jones and Roald Dahl.  I've always loved photography because I've always had Gramps around as an influence because he always seemed to have a camera in his hand.  The man seems to know something about everything but I think that has something to do with the epic amount of books he owns (also an inherited trait!).

So here it is...his recipe for truffles, in his own words with pictures from me!

Mix together thoroughly all the ingredients except the chocolate.   (Use a food processor if you have one).  

Smashing up the biscuits - a ziploc bag is perfect for this!

Mid mixing

The jam makes this malleable.  

Shape it into as many walnut-sized balls as you can. When you helped me, I used to use a coffee-measure to make little pyramids of the mixture, pressing it into the measure, then tapping the measure, inverted, on a board to get out the pyramid.

Lower a small pyrex jug or bowl into a pan containing a small amount of water. Set the pan on the stove to bring it to a good heat.  Cut up all the chocolate small, and bit by bit put it (as required, during the coating process) into the pyrex bowl, where it will melt.   

Dip each truffle into the melted chocolate to coat it, and put the coated truffle on to a tray covered with greaseproof paper, for the coating to cool and become solid.

This done, release the truffles from the paper, and eat them all before anyone else gets to them.   Then lie down for a while.

175grams (6 oz) of biscuit crumbs.  I used Tesco's cheapest own brand digestive biscuits.  Either put them in a food processor to reduce them to crumbs, or simply cover them with baking paper and use a rolling in to crush them.

30grams (1 or 2 ounces) of raisins, chopped small. Again, a food processor with blade if you have one. Otherwise a knife on a board.

40g (1.5 ounces) hazlenuts, finely chopped.   A coffee grinder or blender does this well.

50g (2 ounces) ground almonds.   Tesco's will have this in stock in the baking section.

130g (4 ounces) blackcurrent jam.

15ml (one good teaspoon) of brandy.  If you have no brandy (cognac) use whisky.

Coating = about half a pound (250g++) of cooking chocolate.   Tesco's sell their own brand of rich 72% cocoa solids chocolate, which is better than milk choc for this job, if you don't like cooking chocolate.

Oh and by the way, if you're curious as to who this lovely granddad is...

Me and Gramps at Sidmouth a couple of years ago

Me and Gramps about 30 years ago probably on the way to France!


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. what a cute story, and delicious looking recipe :) lovely blog

    1. Thanks, Sarah! They're so quick and easy to make but really tasty!

  3. Why have I never been treated to these truffles? xxx

  4. These look absolutely delicious! Thanks for sharing the recipe! Your gramp looks great and I love the photo of you two from years ago. It's so cute!

    Single Vegas Girl

    1. They are very tasty. You probably can't get hold of digestive biscuits in the States but think graham crackers might work the same...maybe shortbread?



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