Letters appear across the screen as my fingers tap at the keyboard. Out of the corner of my eye, I see a shadow darting around. I take a look and notice a large bee crawling around the entrance to the hive. Several more bees fly in and out of the hive. A few fall down and their tiny insects legs struggle to crawl across the ground. Their wings flutter, but it does not carry them in the air. The end is near, my friends.
If you're questioning why I am heartless and destroying pollen loving insects, the bees decided to make a home out of my house walls. Yes, in between my walls. If I put my ears against the wall, I can hear low buzzing and chewing noises.
I intended to make this post Thanksgiving related, but life happens and you get to hear about it instead. I never heard about Pumpkin Truffles until I read Blunder Construction's post. The idea of a pumpkin pie in truffle form was ingenious and I ran with the idea. I added some twists that I read from Eat the Love's pumpkin pie post. I loved his idea of cooking down the pumpkin puree to intensify the flavor and adding caramel to add another layer of complexity.
I had the boyfriend bring these treats to share with his coworker. They loved the initial crack from the dark chocolate outer layer with a creamy ginger pumpkin center.
Note: (1) The ginger flavor is pretty pronounced. If you aren't a fan of ginger, reduce it to 3/4 tsp. (2) If you prefer sweeter chocolate, use 2 cups chocolate chips + 1 teaspoon vegetable oil to coat the truffles.
Servings 28 to 30
1 cup (220g) pumpkin puree
6 sheets (99g) graham crackers
1/2 cup (50g) sliced almonds
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp fresh grated ginger
1 tsp vanilla
dash of nutmeg
1/4 cup (50g) sugar
2 TBSP heavy cream
1/8 tsp salt
150g dark chocolate
- In a skillet, cook pumpkin puree over medium low heat for 7 to 10 minutes. Stir frequently and stop when the puree has reduced by half and the color has darkened. Transfer the puree to a clean bowl.
- To the pumpkin puree, stir in cinnamon, ginger, vanilla extract, and nutmeg. Set aside.
- Microwave whipping cream for 10 - 15 seconds to warm it up.
- In a pot, over medium heat add sugar. Watch the sugar. When it first turns into amber, turn the heat off and let the residual heat heat continue cooking the sugar. When it stops turning color, return to the stove top to slowly heat it up again. Stop when it's a dark chestnut brown and it's smoking. Once the desired color is achieved, add heavy cream. Continue stirring as you pour the cream in. If caramel hardens, turn the heat on low and stir until smooth.
- Mix the hot caramel into the pumpkin puree.
- In a food processor, process the crackers until it's a fine powder. Set aside 2 tablespoons for garnish. Do the same with the almonds, process it into a fine powder. Mix both together in a bowl.
- Add the pumpkin mixture into the dry powder and mix well.
- Form 1 teaspoon sized balls with your hands and placed on a cookie sheet lined with waxed or parchment paper. Cover with saran wrap and allow it firm up in the freezer for a couple of hours.
- Melt chocolate over a double boiler. When nearly melted, take the bowl of the heat and let the residual heat melt the rest. Drop a pumpkin ball into the chocolate and use a fork to pick it up so all the excess chocolate drips away.
- Place on parchment paper, garnish with reserved graham cracker crumbs, and allow it to cool. Store in fridge.