Note: This recipe is courtesy of my sister. She doesn’t typically cook (I am the one teaching her!), but she loves to experiment with nut butters. Recently she has made hazelnut truffles; while I cannot taste them as I am allergic to tree nuts, this recipe has been a big hit with the rest of the family.
My grandmother used to keep a stock of truffles and cookies, tucked away under the draping floral tablecloth on the dining room table, for the kids to snack on. She was truly the sweetest; instead of the Chips Ahoy, Hershey’s Kisses, or whatever American kids were nibbling on, she had loads of foreign goodies: LU butter cookies, Quadratini chocolate wafers, and little gold-foil wrapped Ferrero Rochers. Today, those brands automatically trigger memories of her home, full of family and food for everyone to share.
Since she passed away, I haven’t seen Ferrero Rochers since. I couldn’t eat them anyway, but my sister has sorely missed them. So she composed this less-processed, healthy version of Ferrero Rochers to reminisce about our childhood days.
Bonus, they are refined sugar free!
Healthy Ferrero Rochers
- 1 cup dry roasted, unsalted hazelnuts
- 1/2 cup cacao nibs (Buy them here)
- honey (amount as needed, can sub vegan alternative)
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 block dark chocolate (I used 70% dark chocolate)
- additional nibs, to sprinkle on the top
In a food processor, add the cacao nibs and hazelnuts. Run the machine for about 5 minutes, until a coarse, crumbly mixture is made. Drizzle in about 1/4 cup honey, add the cocoa powder, and run the food processor again. When the mixture becomes thick, firm, and rollable into balls, it is finished. Add more honey if the mixture is still too dry. If the mixture becomes too wet, add more cocoa powder at 1 tablespoon at a time. When the mixture is rollable, put the food processor cup in the fridge, covered.
Meanwhile, cut the dark chocolate into chunks. Fill a deep skillet with about 1 inch of water and put it on the stove until it comes to a simmer. Add the chocolate to another bowl, and place the bowl into the water. Stir until the mixture is fully melted. Set aside. (See Notes if you want to learn about how to melt chocolate)
Take the nut mixture out of the fridge and form them into ping-pong size balls, about 2 cm in diameter. Make sure your hands are clean! If you don’t want to hand them too much, you can alternately use two spoons. Form all the mixture into balls and place on a parchment lined tray. Now, spoon melted chocolate over each truffle. You may need to melt more chocolate if you are a little generous. Sprinkle cacao nibs over each truffle, too.
Finished! Store in the fridge for about a week, or in the freezer indefinitely (just make sure you thaw them first, so you don’t break a tooth). Give as gifts, or keep them to yourself to cure a sweets craving the healthy way!