A bite of Brazilian chocolate truffles for the holidays

We partnered with Alhambra-based cooks and food bloggers LatinoFoodie to bring you delicious, flavorful recipes. Today's recipe is for brigadeiros, Brazilian-style chocolate truffles. Read more or jump straight to the recipe!

In our home, the holidays are not complete without chocolate: mole, tamales, champurrado, and plenty of desserts. This year, we're all about brigadeiros, or Brazilian-styled chocolate truffles. Typically, I would stick to my classic recipes for hectic holiday celebrations, but adding this delectable new dish to the spread was a no-brainer.

Brigadeiros get their name from Brazilian Brigadier Eduardo Gomes, a veteran of the 1922 lieutenant revolt at Fort Copacabana. He was a candidate for the Brazilian presidency in 1945, the first year women were allowed to vote for president in Brazil. The story goes that women rallied to the side of the handsome single candidate and made his favorite chocolate treat to sell at campaign fundraisers. While Gomes lost the race, the little truffles won his name.

Unlike regular chocolate truffles, brigadeiros get their chocolate flavor from the cocoa powder, so do not skimp on the quality. The slight caramel taste from the sweetened condensed milk intensifies further while cooking, making chocolate truffles with a little bit of caramel. Decadent indeed!

A quick note: The mixture will thicken to a fudge-like consistency while cooking and firm up further when it chills. Everything from cooking, chilling, and rolling in sprinkles can be done days in advance. The rolling may prove to be a bit sticky, but lightly coating your hands in butter or cooking spray will allow for minimal mess. To store, simply place in a single layer in an airtight container and keep in your refrigerator for up to two days.

You can also dress up your chocolate treats with crushed pistachios or almonds. To further dazzle your guests, try rolling the truffles in crushed peppermint or lightly dust with chili powder.

BrigadeirosYields: 32 trufflesPrep time: 15 minutesCook time: 15 minutes, plus 2 hours for chilling

  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Chocolate sprinkles to decorate

Heat the sweetened condensed milk over low heat in a medium pot. Allow to barely come to a boil.

Whisk in the cocoa and salt. Stir constantly until it thickens. Again, make sure that the mixture is barely at a boil. The chocolate mixture should begin to pull away from the sides and look glossy about 10-15 minutes before it is thick enough.

Remove from heat. Whisk in the butter until well incorporated and shiny. Place in a separate container or bowl, and chill for 2 hours, covered, in the refrigerator.

Using a teaspoon, scoop out some of the chilled chocolate mixture and roll into a ball.

Roll in chocolate sprinkles, reshaping as you go.

Keep chilled until ready to serve.

This recipe was originally published on LatinoFoodie, a blog created by Alhambra cooks and food lovers Art Rodriguez and Stephen Chavez. LatinoFoodie highlights cultural trends in food and beverages and features original and adapted recipes, product reviews, and food events.

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