The Trouble with Truffles
Over the course of the last year, I discovered that I am not only cursed in eggs, but in cooking in general. Things just seem to happen to me at the worst times and for the stupidest reasons. Some are so frustratingly minute by themselves that at times I’ve found myself on the verge of taking a particular kitchen appliance outside and teaching it a lesson… with a hammer. Sometimes I’ll pour out the last of my mirin and be just a little bit short with nothing left in the pantry. Or I’ll use flour from my refrigerator and cause my dough to chunk up because it’s too cold. Or I’ll make a dessert for the family party and end up wanting to slit my wrists.
Things started innocently enough.
A package of Golden Oreos and a box of Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s (which are now my favorite Trader Joe’s item!!) sat on the counter, ready to be made into yummy things I recently discovered on Foodgawker called Oreo truffles. The recipes were pretty simple, so I thought I’d be ambitious and make white ones and brown ones.
Stupid, stupid me.
I really should have known things weren’t going to go well, given my numerous failed attempts at melting chocolate. I don’t know if I’ve ever blogged about it before. I may have been in such a terrible chocolate rage that I simply blocked it out. For the life of me I can’t remember what I tried to melt chocolate for the last time.
Okay, a search of my own site (thank goodness I have one!) has told me that it was spiderweb cupcakes for Halloween. It might not have been the best idea to search because now I’m looking at the pictures and getting pissed off all over again. Anyway, I’m getting ahead of myself, because it wasn’t even the chocolate that got me all mad at first.
Here we have the golden cookies in my food processor with a block of cream cheese (and cookies in the background, meaning I’m already overextending myself). I stuffed a few in before giving it a whirl and it didn’t really go too well. The cream cheese stayed at the bottom and didn’t smush the cookies. I added the rest in little by little and after sticking my fingers in to smash some hidden uncrushed cookies, I tasted it. The food processor had been trying for so long that the filling was hot. It wasn’t just hot though; it was freaking GODLY.
I am totally not kidding. Golden Oreos ground up with cream cheese is heaven in your mouth.
Unfortunately, I have no photo because my fingers were too sticky. That stuff is like extremely sticky putty. The only consolation you have for dealing with such horrendously sticky stuff is eating the stuff you just can’t pry off your fingers. Make sure you have lots of soap nearby.
I put the bowl of golden heaven into the fridge to cool off because I didn’t read the directions right, which stated that you should form them into balls THEN chill them. This kind of kitchen idiocy is apparently just how I roll. Next, I started on the Joe Joe’s. I don’t know why there’s an apostrophe in there.
After the problem with the golden ones, I thought I’d just crush them and throw them all in and see if that helped.
It did not.
I just could not get the cookies at the top to grind up. I pushed it down, didn’t help. I tried to stir it, didn’t help. I thought maybe I should move it to the blender instead and see how that went, but I hadn’t used it in so long that I couldn’t figure out what pieces went where and the blade would spin without blending anything. Eventually I looked around and saw that the space I’d cleaned was now a horrible, black cookie mess.
My processor and blender was a goopy mess and there were crumbs everywhere. I was raging mad and anyone that talked to me or entered the kitchen got a bark and a bite.
It got worse. The chocolate chips (THAT I SWEAR LOTS OF INTERNET SITES SAY ARE FINE TO USE FOR MELTING) wouldn’t melt to a nice dipping texture. I read that I should add shortening, so I grabbed my thing of shortening and added a tablespoon. That worked, so I started dipping all the luscious balls of golden yummy into the chocolate and had them drying when I licked my fingers at the end. Shit.
They tasted like OIL. It turns out, my shortening was really old and everything in it had settled down or something, leaving me with just oily shortening at the top. I’d added it to a batch of melted white chips too, so they both tasted horrible. But worst of all was that my delicious golden truffles were completely ruined by the chocolate covering them. I tried eating one and it tasted like lard. I dumped them all. In another life, when I’m not getting fat, I plan to grind up golden Oreos with cream cheese and just eat the paste.
I used a couple of drops of oil for the white and that wasn’t going well, so I just went ahead and used my hands to coat the Joe Joe balls in it and plopped them all goopy and pokey looking on top the cookie sheet. To hell with how they looked, I’d had it already.
Mr. Pikko felt sorry for me and volunteered to go buy me shortening. When he brought it back, I opened it and right away knew what was wrong with my other jar. Shortening is white, not translucent. Duh! *sigh* I tried making red chocolate to flick on top the white truffles, but adding red food coloring made it clump up. I think I knew this in the back of my head, but didn’t listen to myself. I ended up settling for regular chocolate and the shortening did its work without making it taste like crap.
My agony wasn’t over though. My truffles started pooping. Confused? See below:
Isn’t that just fan-freaking-tastic? Apparently the middle started to expand once in the chocolate shell and they started to crack. If they didn’t crack, they simply found a little hole and started crapping all over my already befuddled baking ego. Here’s a blurry side view:
At this point I was ready to start laughing like a crazed maniac.
In the end, they turned out okay and everyone liked them and my kitchen troubles were put behind me until Mr. Pikko betrayed me and told everyone that I’d worked on them for a LONG time. The minty taste inside made up for some of the anguish. Joe Joe’s really are awesome.
I really was ready to kill my food processor. I hope it sits in my cabinet dreaming of me coming at it while chanting REDRUM! Yesterday I bought a double boiler and I intend to use that sucker to stop this chocolate horror. That and I’m never using chocolate chips again. I AM DONE WITH THEM!
Bentos will return tomorrow and with it, the long overdue results of my Christmas bento clean-out contest! Be sure to follow me on Twitter!