French Vanilla Cheesecake Truffles

        French Vanilla Cheesecake Truffles

Makes:  About 2 dozen cheesecake truffles
Preparation Time:  2-3 hours
Baking Time:  No baking required
Baking Time:  Uses a ¾ inch in diameter portion scoop and cooking sheet

Filling  (Centers)
1 cup white chocolate confectionery coating  (5 oz)
6 T butter (margarine not recommended)
6 oz cream cheese (cold)

Dipping Chocolate
1 lb chocolate confectionery coating
1 T shortening

Topping
Chopped walnuts  (about 2 ½ cups)

Prepare filling:
Put white chocolate into a microwave safe bowl.  Put butter (cut into chunks) on top.  Microwave 30 seconds to 1 minute or until almost melted.  Remove from microwave and stir until completely melted and smooth.  Put melted mixture into a bowl of a heavy duty electric mixer.  Start mixer on low.  Add cream cheese, cut into 2 inch chunks.  Gradually increase mixer speed until you reach high without splattering.  Whip on high until cool and double in volume-about 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper.  Scoop filling onto parchment paper lined pan.  Make sure the portions are flat on the bottom and even.  The tops should be uniform and without ridges.  Refrigerate scooped centers on cookie sheet at least an hour.  Longer is better-even over night.

Just before you are ready to dip the centers, prepare the dipping chocolate (see the following recipe) and keep warm during dipping.  A non plastic bowl put over a slow cooker (in the manner of a double boiler set on “keep warm” works well as does a non plastic bowl over warm but not steaming water.

Begin by dipping the rounded side of the formed centers.  One at a time, hold by the bottom (the flat side) and dip half way into chocolate.  Allow extra chocolate to run off and back into the bowl.  When the chocolate stops running and before it sets, dip tops (rounded dipped side) into nuts.  Return half dipped center to parchment lined pan, top side (rounded side) up.  Repeat until all tops are dipped.

Put another sheet of parchment paper on a clean cooking sheet in preparation of dipping bottoms.

To dip bottoms, hold half dipped center by the now set chocolate top and dip bottom into chocolate.  Overlap chocolate so center is completely covered in chocolate.  Let excess drip off.  Lightly scrape truffle bottom on side of bowl to further remove excess chocolate.  Place completed truffle on clean parchment lined cookie sheet.  Repeat with remaining truffles.  Refrigerate or freeze finished truffles until serving time.

Preparing The Chocolate For Dipping Chocolate Truffles

Making up chocolate for dipping is not an exact recipe.  The proportions will vary from day to day according to the temperature, humidity and a million other tiny little, unseen factors.  The recipe given here is a good place to start.

1 lb chocolate confectionary coating
1 T shortening (approximately)

Melt together in a microwave heating at 30 second (or less) intervals.  Stir between each interval.  Keep warm over hot water (not steaming), in a slow cooker set on low or other similar way while dipping truffles.  Add additional shortening (melted) if necessary being careful not to add too much. 

Dipping tips
You’ll know if you’ve added too much shortening because the chocolate will slip off the truffle rather than coat it.

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