The holiday season is a time for many to enjoy scrumptious treats and savory eats. From the office potluck to a family gathering, the celebrations -- and food -- abound! But this seasonal splurge can often mean additional calories. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, Americans gain about 0.4 percent of their body weight every year in the days surrounding Christmas.
Treat those with a sweet tooth to a healthy alternative. These dark chocolate truffles are sweetened with puréed prunes.
|4 dried prunes||½ cup Chocolate Soy Milk|
|¼ cup water||1 cup chopped walnuts, divided|
|12 oz 60% Dark Chocolate Chips, divided||¼ cup Light Prune Juice|
|½ cup Firm Silken Tofu||1 Tbsp. Benecol™ Light|
- Soak the prunes in warm water to cover for 5-10 minutes, until soft. Drain the water from the prunes and add the soaked prunes and ¼ cup of water in a blender or food processor, and blend until it is a smooth pureed consistency. Set this prune puree aside for a later step.
- Place 1¾ cups of dark chocolate chips in a medium-size bowl, and set aside for a later step
- Combine tofu and soy milk in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth and creamy. Pour tofu mixture into a medium saucepan.
- Add light prune juice to the tofu mixture and slowly bring to a boil over medium-low heat. Stir constantly to avoid burning the mixture.
- After the mixture reaches a boil, pour the hot tofu mixture over the dark chocolate chips. Let the mixture sit for about 1 minute to melt the chocolate.
- After chips are melted, using a spatula, fold the tofu and chocolate mixture until well blended. The mixture should be a consistent texture and color, with no visible chocolate chunks or tofu.
- Add 1 Tbsp. of Benecol Light and the pureed prunes to the chocolate tofu mixture. Mix until thoroughly combined.
- Pour the chocolate tofu mixture into a 9x11”pan, spreading evenly. Refrigerator for 10 minutes to firm. During this time, stir the mixture every 5 minutes, ensuring that it is becoming firmer, yet soft to touch.
- While the mixture is refrigerated, measure out ¾ cup of the chopped walnuts and chop them a little more finely.
- At the end of 10 minutes, add ¾ cup of finely chopped walnuts, and mix until walnuts are evenly spread throughout; again spreading the mixture evenly in the pan. Refrigerate another 5-10 minutes.
- Once it is the consistency of very thick pudding, scoop the mixture using a tablespoon and form into small 1-inch balls, placing them in rows on a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper.
- After you have made all the truffles, place the cookie sheet(s) in the freezer for 10 minutes to harden.
- Take the remaining ¼ cup of walnuts, and finely chop.
- Melt ¼ cup Dark Chocolate in the microwave, at 80% Power, until melted. TIP: Microwave in 15-second increments, and stir in between increments, until melted.
- After the truffles have been in the freezer for 10 minutes, take them out, 1 cookie sheet at a time. Top each truffle with ¼ tsp. of melted dark chocolate and sprinkle with a pinch of finely chopped walnuts.
- Refrigerate the truffles for at least an hour before serving. Remove the truffles from the refrigerator for 30 minutes prior to serving.
- Store refrigerated in an airtight container with wax paper between the layers of truffles to ensure they do not stick together.
Makes 55 truffles
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This recipe was developed by McKenzie Ramirez, a Texas A&M nutrition intern. It was inspired by a recipe from a Food Network celebrity chef.
NOTE: Baby food prunes can be used in place of making the puree. Use 1 Tbsp for this recipe.