Monday, November 19, 2012

Cocoa Covered Pistachio Date Truffles

Cocoa covered date truffle
The whole mood around festive season stays the same, doesn't matter if its Thanksgiving in the US or Diwali in India. Irrespective of the country, people, language or culture if its the holidays season there will be a struggle against insanity! I have spent enough Diwalis and Holis in India amongst boatload of relatives and friends to know that! Long lists of menus being created, destroyed and then created again, a month in advance. Some new recipes being developed and some of grandma's tested ones thrown in the mix. The whole talks about who is cooking what and who cooks it best.

Date Truffle Collage 2

I wouldn't call my mother any less of a risk taker when it would comes to her in the kitchen but still holiday season was no time for playing around. She had her favorite and "tested" list of dishes and she would stick to them . Dahi vada (fried lentil dumplings served with spiced yogurt), boondi laddoos (a sweet dish made with chickpea clusters), gulab jamuns and chola masala served with hot puffed poori and a few stir fried vegetables is what the menu would mostly look like every year.
She had the patience of getting up very early in the morning to start cooking the dinner. Nothing could be made a couple days in advance because its just impolite to feed your guests baasi (a day old) food. So the day would start very early even before the sun comes with a shower and prayer, then cleaning up of the kitchen followed by a cooking marathon which would only end when the guests would start trickling in the evening. I never understood why this hardship was required but she had her set of rules and she grew up following them.

Dates
I, on the other hand have a different set of rules and one of the perks of living in a foreign land is that mummy wouldn't know that! I believe in band-aids, microwaves and quick fixes. So when planning a big meal like Diwali or Thanksgiving I concentrate on one or two big dishes which ask for most of my attention. That's what people are going to dig into anyway, rest are all side kicks. But don't neglect the side kicks either, just try to keep them easy, quick and if possible make in advance.
Now one of my favorite side kick right now which practically changed my life is this recipe for date truffles. I quickly softened my dates in a little bit of butter before grinding them and the extra caramelized flavor that added to it is amazing. This ones easy enough that I made it with my 3 year old, doesn't ask for many ingredients, its delicious and is healthy too- Jackpot!

Date Truffle Collage 1
Ingredients:
1 lbs pitted dates (coarsely chopped)
1/2 cup shelled pistachios
1 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 tablespoon sweetened cocoa powder

Method: Makes approx. 16
Melt butter in pan. Add dates. On medium heat cook the dates until they loosen up and begin to look pulpy.
Transfer the dates into a dish or to a food processor.
Now in the same hot pan quickly toast the pistachios for a couple minutes until they give out some aroma. Turn the heat off. Let the pistachios cool.
Transfer both pistachio and dates into a food processor and grind it into a paste. After a point it might get a little difficult for the blades to move. Just move the mixture around with a spatula or spoon to aid smooth grinding but do not add any water. The paste does not necessarily need to be very smooth but enough to not have lumps in it.
Wait the mixture is cool enough to touch. Then oil your hands a little and roll them into small balls.
Take sweetened cocoa in a plastic ziplock back. Drop all the truffles in it. Seal the ziplock back and shake it vigorously for 15 seconds.
Take the Cocoa Covered Pistachio Date Truffles out and enjoy after a nice and hearty Thanksgiving meal!

38 comments:

  1. I love reading about your family's cooking traditions. Whether or not you do it the same way that your mum does, I think you put out some pretty spectacular dishes! And these truffles look like fantastic treats.

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    1. Aww, you always say that Dara and it makes someone REALLY happy :-) Thanks!

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  2. Wow you really hit the Jackpot with these! Sounds and looks delish!And I think I remember that scoop from our trip to the Mission! You have such an eye for props :)

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    1. You have a sharp eyesight Rose, yes it is the same scoop! We should do a similar trip again sometime.

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  3. This is really a wonderful idea for the parties Prerna.. way toooooooooooo good. Lovely pictures as always :)

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  4. Gorgeous truffles! Healthy, yet indulgent.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  5. Delicious truffles, love the way u have used dates!

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  6. Gorgeous! You know why you are one of my besties? We love similar food http://www.journeykitchen.com/2011/11/chocolate-cinnamon-date-truffles-sugar.html

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    1. LOL- Can't believe that! What can I say, great minds think alike :-)

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  7. They look pretty and delicious! Gorgeous clicks!

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  8. Im am in awe of your family cooking traditions..yes, now we all opt for quick & easy ones as part of any dinner menus..I stick to 1-2 dishes that would be the star of the menu & then go for intersting, quick accompaniments that can be made a day in advance...My latest is the plum chutney that seems to be hit with all!! but looks like these truffles will be the next!!! look so delectable & irresistible..!!!
    Prathima Rao
    Prats Corner

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  9. Lovely read ... always enjoy reading about how other families have the same traditions. It must be an Indian thing LOL! These truffles are calling my name! Perfect in every way!

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  10. Gorgeous! Lovely dish and sweet treat for the holidays (in every culture). :)

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  11. I love date truffles! I make a raw one which tastes fabulous. I will definitely try cooking it next time :)

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  12. Perfect recipe for the upcoming holiday season, jackpot! love reading your story :)

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  13. Love how simple, yet fantastic this is! Bet it would be great as favours/holiday gift boxes too!

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  14. I have just made some date truffles on my blog with a few more ingredients than these but simple works well too. I love that there is no need to add any sugar. I usually soak my dates to soften them but your method is certainly going to add more flavour. I will try that next time

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  15. It's not only looks good but very healthy too!

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  16. These look amazing. And a big big plus is that they aren't unhealthy. Thanks :)

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  17. Loving these truffles! How fun and what a delicious change to the usual truffles.

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  18. These are beautiful treats! I have never had truffles that have dates in it. Looks like a perfect holiday gift as well!

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  19. Yummmm all the way! Will try these for sure!

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  20. I have made something very similar to this in the past and it is such a pleasure-almost guilt free dessert. The rich flavor from date works so well with the chocolate. I have to try with added pistachios now.

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  21. These look really delicious and easy to make!

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  22. What kind of dates to use for this recipe? Would medjool be OK?
    Na

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  23. Your recipes r really awesome.
    http://zariafrozrecipes.blogspot.com/

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  24. They look fantastic. So perfect!

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  25. Love this recipe, I definitely have to try it

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  26. This is what some very unique recipe i am seeing. Would be pleased if your post come more often. Thanks

    Cheese cake

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  27. Every picture you take is frame-worthy. I can spend forever looking at the play of light and attention to detail!

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  28. i read your blog and i love this amazing recipe.i am waiting next recipes.i also bookmark this post.

    Indian Restaurant

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  29. Beautiful, too tempting and highly irresistible!!

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  30. lovely blog, found it rather serendipitously!

    also, want to leave a word about our blog Aalayam. Come check us out at
    http://aalayaminspiration.blogspot.com

    cheers!
    deepa

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  31. Spent about 15 minutes ogling these beautiful choccies! Your photos take my breath away!

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  32. lovely cocoa with pista that to with dates it is very good recipe for those who wont take dates

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