Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Brigadeiros (Brazilian Truffles)
Today I’m featuring my first dish from Brazil, in honor of that nation’s Independence Day. One hundred and eighty-nine years Pedro, the eldest son of then Portuguese King João VI, declared freedom from Portugal. This happened on September 7, 1822 after 322 years of Portuguese rule. Pedro went on to declare himself Emperor of Brazil and was later briefly King of Portugal before abdicating in favor of his seven year old daughter.
Interestingly, these chocolate truffles also have a link to politics. They are named after Eduardo Gomes, a brigadier in the Brazilian air force who twice ran unsuccessful for the presidency of Brazil. Despite his political failure, Gomes was popular enough that this truffle was named after him.
Brigadeiros are popular at children’s birthday parties and other celebratory events.
Makes 18 truffles
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1 tablespoon corn syrup
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
3 tablespoons cocoa, sifted or powdered hot chocolate
finely shredded coconut, finely chopped slivered almonds, colored sanding sugar, sprinkles or other garnish (optional)
1. In a heavy bottomed pan, heat the first three ingredients over medium heat. Using a heat proof spatula, stir the mixture continuously to prevent it from burning at the bottom of the pan. Some burning may still occur; if it does, do not scrape the burned layer into your mixture.
2. Bring the mixture to a boil and immediately reduce the heat to low. Add cocoa and continue mixing well. Sifted cocoa is more likely to blend in without creating lumps. If you’re feeling unmotivated to sift, un-sifted cocoa or powdered hot chocolate mixture may be used.
3. Stir the mixture for 8-10 minutes until it thickens and pulls away from pan. It should be a dense fudgy batter.
4. Pour into a bowl and allow to cool to room temperature. Then place in the fridge for 4-12 hours.
5. Grease your hands with butter or cooking spray and roll the batter into truffles.
6. If the batter is soft, place these in the fridge to harden.
7. If desired, roll the truffles in a coating of your choice. This will help to keep softer pieces in better shape.
8. Depending on consistency, place in the fridge or freezer to harden before serving.