Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Brigadeiros


Remember making fake fudge as a kid? Microwave a bag of chocolate chips with a can of condensed milk, pour into a pan, eat the entire thing in front of the TV before Mom gets home?

Oh, like you never did that ...


Sadly, I am too old now to eat an entire tray of candy with a spoon. There isn't enough Lactaid in the world! Plus the new Scooby Doo episodes are terrible

But truffles are another story. Truffles are sophisticated, especially when you call them Brigadeiros. Named for a Brigadier who ran for President of Brazil in the 1940s, these candies were served at fundraisers by the Brigadier's wife. The name stuck, and so did the sweets; they are still one of the most popular desserts in Brazil.


I learned to make Brigadieros from the wonderful StreetSmartBrazil.com website. I tweaked the recipe a bit, but their adorable video demonstrates the technique.

The candies are really beautiful, but they are ridiculously easy to put together. And you can roll the chocolate in almost anything. Chocolate sprinkles are traditional, but I will definitely have my kids make a batch with crushed candy canes or red sprinkles to take to their teachers before winter break.


I do need to spend a little time with my friend Mr. Google to find out whether Brigadeiros must be flavored with chocolate. As someone who flips out over recipes for challah that call for milk (NO!!), I do understand that some food rules can never be broken. But if not, why not white chocolate, or peanut butter, or chai?

I did make a batch flavored with Japanese matcha powder. They were gorgeous, but not very tasty.


Brigadeiros
1-140oz can of sweetened condensed milk (396g)
4 tablespoons natural cocoa powder (30g)
2 tablespoons butter (28g)
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup sprinkles, chopped nuts, coconut, etc.

small paper or foil muffin liners

In a small saucepan, whisk the condensed milk and cocoa powder until smooth. Place over low heat and add butter and salt. Whisk steadily for about ten minutes, until the mixture looks like very thick pudding. Off the heat, stir in the vanilla and pour the mixture into a flat bowl. Refrigerate for about half an hour to firm up.

Spread a square of wax paper on the counter. Using a disher or two spoons, drop chocolate in 1-inch balls onto the wax paper. If you have time, slide the paper onto a tray to refrigerate for 15 minutes more.

Roll balls between your palms to smooth, then gently toss them in the sprinkles to coat. Place in muffin liners and store in the refrigerator.


Makes 24.

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