07 Feb2007

choc1

Here is a really simple, yummy and elegant chocolate you can make with a short list of readily available ingredients. It is a perfect Valentine’s chocolate, and believe it or not, choc2far healthier than most store bought, boxed chocolates. I saw this recipe in a fabulous new cookbook called “Happy in the Kitchen” by Michel Richard, a former pastry chef who worked with Thomas Keller at the French Laundry and who now has his own restaurants in the Washington, D.C. area. I have dipped lots of other fruits in chocolate before but never thought to try grapes…this is really a take on an “adult raisinet”, and it is a real eye opener… Start with smaller, firm seedless grapes that are more sweet than tart. Remove them from their stems and wash and dry carefully with paper towels. I used about 2 cups worth of grapes. Stick the cleaned grapes into the fridge to chill…

Next melt about 3-4 ounces of good dark chocolate over a double boiler and allow it to cool just a bit so it isn’t scorching hot and might “cook” the grapes. The chocolate should be at body temperature… I used a bar of Lindt 70% cacao dark chocolate but I choc3found it a bit too intense; I would try a 60% bar the next time. Pour the melted chocolate over the chilled grapes and stir to coat evenly. The chocolate will start to set quickly since the grapes are cool. Next, sprinkle the grapes with cocoa placed in a fine sieve. I used a great Valrhona cocoa that really made a marked difference in the final product. Transfer the grapes onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and sprinkle more cocoa if you like. Stick this in the fridge if you are here in the tropics (allow to set out on the counter if you are in cooler climates) for a half hour before serving. They look almost exactly like chocolate truffles when you lay them out on a plate. Use a good quality milk chocolate if you really can’t stand dark chocolate. Don’t tell your dinner guests what they are…just have them bite into one and when they realize it is both delicious and relatively low calorie, they should have at least 3-4 pieces each on average…at least that is what our guests did… While this is a terrific idea for Valentine’s or as a gift, they should be eaten within a few hours of making them for the finest taste…

 

COMMENTS:

  1. Hershey says:

    I am so going to try it! I have a can of van houten cocoa which i bought for my chocolate polvoron recipe. Still have to buy the chocolate bar tomorrow. I’m right in the middle of chocolate addiction lately! Thanks…:-)

    Feb 7, 2007 | 6:14 pm

     
  2. mikael says:

    i recall eating at the los angeles restaurant of michel richard, citrus, on melrose ave. in the late 80s, early 90s. when it opened it was judged the best restaurant in the US and
    coined the label california-french cuisine. i believe citrus and its sister resto citronelle closed late 90s when m. richard moved to wash DC and concentrate on his east coast restos.

    Feb 7, 2007 | 11:39 pm

     
  3. Grace Lopez says:

    Thanks MM for this wonderful dessert. I will definitely do this over the weekend as special treat for my family.

    Feb 8, 2007 | 12:29 am

     
  4. Maria Clara says:

    Looking at your pictures give me the impression they are chocolate truffles made out of grape juice. Amazing how you transformed table grapes to another destiny for chocolate lovers. Indeed the Valrhona cocoa powder gave it another layer of flavor!

    Feb 8, 2007 | 1:42 am

     
  5. Sintea says:

    I am an avid lurker of your wonderful website for a few weeks now but I must thank you for this great post about these grape truffles. You just gave me an idea for a Valentine present for my hubby!:) Chocolates are aplenty here in the Switzerland. I just need to look for a great heart-shaped glass dish to present it with. Thanks again, Marketman, and keep your great posts coming!:)

    Feb 8, 2007 | 3:43 am

     
  6. millet says:

    these look super! will definitely do them this weekend!

    Feb 8, 2007 | 7:18 am

     
  7. Mila says:

    I wonder if you could freeze the grapes before it’s dipped/rolled in chocolate or if you could freeze them after they’ve been covered in chocolate. A good food science experiment.

    Feb 8, 2007 | 7:57 am

     
  8. Sidekick says:

    I’m wondering if the process is the same as we saw those chocolate coated apples in the Universal Studios that was sold at $3.50 to $4.00 each. My daughter loves to eat them thats why I’m planning to make one here.

    Feb 8, 2007 | 9:14 am

     
  9. carol says:

    If one had the patience, it would be nice to dip the grapes one by one, while still bunched. Of course it gives away the surprise inside but the idea is tweaked to become ‘a bunch of grape truffles.’ Can’t wait to try this!

    Feb 9, 2007 | 1:57 pm

     
  10. goodtimer says:

    where can one get valrhona cocoa? these grape “truffles” look yummy!

    Feb 9, 2007 | 3:24 pm

     
  11. Marketman says:

    goodtimer, I got the valrhona cocoa at cook’s exchange in Rockwell…they also have megamall and glorietta 4 stores… I have used it in several recipes and it is quite good…

    Feb 9, 2007 | 4:38 pm

     
 

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