Orange-Basil Truffles

A typical savory herb goes sweet in this refreshing citrus truffle.


12 oz. premium semisweet chocolate (about 60 percent cacao), finely chopped
1 cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp. coarsely grated orange zest (about 1 orange)
1 1-oz. package fresh basil, leaves stripped and coarsely torn, stems discarded
About ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted


• Place the finely chopped chocolate in a large bowl and set aside.

• Pour the cream into a medium (3-quart) nonreactive saucepan and bring to the scalding point over medium heat. (The cream should not boil, or it will separate.) Add the orange zest and torn basil leaves and let the mixture steep about 30 minutes.

• Gently reheat the cream over medium heat. To remove the orange zest, basil and any skin that may have formed, strain the warm cream through a fine-mesh sieve directly onto the reserved chocolate. Press the absorbed cream from the basil leaves and onto the chocolate before discarding the leaves. Let the mixture sit, without stirring, 1 to 2 minutes to allow the chocolate to melt. Gently stir to bring the chocolate and cream together. (If the chocolate does not completely melt, place the bowl over simmering water in a double boiler and heat slowly, stirring constantly, just until the mixture is completely smooth.)

• Pour the ganache into a shallow pan to a ½- to ¾-inch depth. Cover and chill 2 to 3 hours, or until firm enough to be rolled into balls without melting or misshaping in your hands.

• Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Using a 1-inch melon baller, scoop the ganache into balls. Roll the balls between your palms to make them perfectly round and then roll in the cocoa powder to evenly coat. Store in airtight containers in the fridge up to 1 week. For the fullest flavor, bring to room temperature before serving.

Tags : Basil , Chocolate , Orange