This is a sweet that has intrigued me for decades. I first saw it in the film “Amadeus” when Salieri offered one to Mozart’s wife. Later, it appeared as one of the sensuous confections in the film “Chocolat.” The name alone brings to mind passion, seduction, and decadent deliciousness. Finding a recipe was not all that difficult, deciding upon which one to use was a bit more so. I ended up sort of winging it based upon what I had on hand. Some people like to dip the truffles into white chocolate; others like to use dark chocolate. I decided to go for the dark and use what little white chocolate I had to attempt to make hearts to adorn the tops; in other cases I just drizzled the tops (which was a heck of a lot easier, I can tell you). Whatever you decide, I will tell you that melting the chocolate in a double boiler (as opposed to tempering in a microwave) seems to work the best, as does sticking a toothpick into the bottom of each and then swirling in the melted chocolate. I tried dropping, hand dipping, pouring chocolate over the tops, and eventually decided this was the easiest way, not to mention the prettiest. Some of them were downright ugly!
If you’ve never had chestnuts before, this is a great introduction. Mr. O-P assured me that he didn’t like chestnuts until he tasted one of these, and then I had to stop him from eating them all.
Nipples of Venus (Capezzoli di Venere)
12 ounces dark chocolate, chopped (I used Trader Joe’s)
1 6.5-ounce package Melissa’s Peeled & Steamed Chestnuts
5 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 T. brandy
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 ounces dark chocolate, chopped (I used Trader Joe’s), for melting & dipping
Place the dark chocolate into the top part of a double boiler over simmering water, and allow to melt. Turn off the heat and let the chocolate cool. Meanwhile, put the chestnuts into the work bowl of a food processor, and process until the chestnuts are finely ground, about 1 minute.
In the work bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Stir in the chestnuts, brandy, and vanilla extract; beat until smooth. Stir in the chocolate.
Here you can do one of two things, either pinch off about 1 tablespoon of filling per truffle, and roll it into balls about 1 inch in diameter, OR fill a pastry bag fitted with an extra large round tip (Wilton 1A) and just pipe them (I chose the latter). Once the truffles are formed, allow to stand for about ten minutes or so, and then melt your chocolate and start dipping. Decorate the tops as you see fit.
This post is linked to:
Full Plate Thursday
Thursday Favorite Things
Simple and Sweet Fridays
Fridays Flash Blog
What To Do Weekend
Weekend Blog Hop