Here in Australia, we have a hot xmas - its often 30C plus, everyone is outside playing cricket or volleyball, having a swim, or sat inside drinking in the air conditioning. We have a really different xmas from our friends in the northern hemisphere, but we still have similar food to the English when we celebrate the 25th December. We often have turkey, everyone has a ham... dessert is often a christmas pud, with custard, cream or ice cream, most of the time we have the choice of all 3! But it is pretty heavy, its really not a summer dessert. So Ive decided to take this popular flavour, that so many associate with christmas, and change it up a little bit that we still have xmas cake, but you just take a mouthful rather than a bowlful!
I took a regular 700g supermarket xmas cake, added melted chocolate, cointreau orange zest and then let it sit for an hour while I cooked dinner. I rolled them into balls, topped them with white chocolate and some chopped glace cherries. Put them in the fridge and let them set.
How cute are they!? Once they set they're great to give as gifts, or to put out when you have friends over during the xmas season. They last for aaages too, freeze em, seal em up in the fridge for times when you need to bust out the treats! This is a great recipe to get kids involved with, as they love the chocolate drizzling, cherry decorating and of course, a spoonful of melted chocolate for them!
1 x 700g christmas cake
1 x block of dark chocolate (as dark and good a quality as you can find/afford)
Cointreau to taste (or use a bit of orange juice if you want to omit the booze)
Zest of an orange
Half a block of white chocolate
1) Melt the dark chocolate - I use a bain marie type setup, of simmering water with a metal/glass bowl on top. You can melt it in the microwave as well - whatever works for you!
2) Crumble up the christmas cake - and have a taste! These cakes often taste different, so make sure you have a bit of a test so you can judge how much of everything to add later!
3) Add the cointreau, I think I added 3 or 4 good sploshes, the orange zest and the chocolate then give it a good old mix! Make sure its all incorporated, and leave it for a while for the flavours to meld and make friends!
4) Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper, and start to roll out little teaspoon sized balls of the mixture, until youve run out. Pop the balls in the fridge, while you melt the white chocolate, and finely chop the cherries. How finely you chop them is up to you and your level of attention to detail! The cherries are meant to be like holly, so how you decide to chop them is up to you! Putting the balls in the fridge means that when you drizzle the white choc on, it sets a little bit and so doesnt run off the balls as quickly (taking the cherries with it!). If youre somewhere cold, I wouldnt worry about it, but in my warm summer kitchen it helped!
Drizzle the truffles with white chocolate and decorate with glace cherries! Pop them back in the fridge to set and then pop them in containers to store! Or just eat them!