Sunday, November 06, 2011

Let's make Christmas - Omar Allibhoy's Orange and olives chocolate truffles

This year Vanessa Kimbell started the Let's make Christmas challenge to food bloggers, which consists in sharing ideas about home-made foodie gifts for friends and family this Christmas.
Can I say I just loved the idea and moreover I have done this before! And it was fab!

Nowadays the choice of products we could possibly chose from is so huge that to make a mistake and chose an "unwanted" present is very likely to happen.

Most of the objects we receive as gifts are superfluous or we don't really like them and the end up no Ebay as unwanted gifts. Or from the point of view of a gift-buyer we either spend a lot of time choosing the best present and wondering how the people would like it, or we just buy some stuff so we have a present. Too much headache in the first case and not enough connection in the second.

I like home-made food gifts because they are the essence of a gift - making something especially for someone else, using our own hands. And hey, who doesn't like sweet foods?

My proposal for foodie gift is chocolate truffles. It's a very traditional gift, Delicious magazine even ranked truffles among the most loved Christmas foodie presents saying "If a truffle doesn't melt their heart, nothing will". :)

Just these are not plain ones but with a twist.

They are made with Spanish black olives tapenade and grated orange rind - and are heavenly delicious.

Orange zest and olive tapenade dark chocolate trufles

I tried them on a cooking lesson Cooking with Olives I was sent to thanks to my friend Artemis from Wonderfoodland blog, and I am going to write more about this later this week.

The recipe belongs to Omar Allibhoy, a charismatic young chef who stands behind the El Pirata de Tapas, named Best Spanish Restaurant for 2010 by Gordon Ramsay.

Growing up in a communist country oranges always remind me of Christmas and New Year as citrus fruit was only available during this time of the year. There were big queues and rationing system to make sure the fruit will be available for more people. The smell of a sweet orange always makes me thing of winter.

The recipe is very easy o make and even fool proof.

Let's make Christmas

(Makes 15 large ones or 30 smaller ones - I made the smaller ones)

200 gr dark chocolate - over or 70 %
50 gr olive tapenade - unsalted
grated zest of 1 orange
200 ml double cream
40 gr butter

cocoa powder for dusting


There are different methods to approach this recipe, but I will give the method I attended and then reapplied.

Chop the chocolate to even pieces and heat in the microwave oven on full power for 1 minute. Leave for 20 seconds. Then repeat.
Make sure the chocolate is melting but not burning.

Mix with a spatula and make sure if there are any lumps they are melting until everything is smooth. Then add the olive tapenade and continue to mix until well absorbed. Finally add gradually the double cream continuing mixing.
At the end add the orange zest and make sure it is distributed evenly.

Cover with plastic wrap and make sure it touches the surface of the ganache to avoid formation of skin.

Place in the fridge for 3-4 hours or overnight.

Make truffles and dust them with cocoa powder.

And now pack them ready for dispatch!

Let's make Christmas (wrapping)


Choclette said...

Olives sounds so counter intuitive to use in truffles, but now I've seen yours I so want to try them. Orange is of course a classic and would be delicious on it's own, but I am now intrigued and no other will do!

Heidi Roberts said...

I made these truffles on a Taste of Spain cooking course. They are yummy. Had thought of making them for Let's Make christmas but will think of something else now. Cheers.

Sneige said...

@Choclette - I was also surprised this recipe works, but it doesn't only work - it's magnificent!
You can't really taste the olive pate (tapenade) but I this they contrbute to the mousse-y feeling when you eat them. Oh, they are great!

@Heidi Roberts - I had them on the same occasion - a Spanish tapas cooking class at Food at 52 school in London.
They are an absolute delight. I asked Omar Allibhoy if I can share the recipe on my blog and he said yes. So I did :) I think thy make a perfect Christmas present.
What did you chose to make?

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