Healthy Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

I have a huge sweet tooth. And basically no limit for sugar.  I can eat an absurd about of sugar.  It is embarrassing and frustrating, because I usually end up feeling yucky because of it, while still wanting to go back for more.

Then, a few weeks ago, I woke up in the night with the most awful migraine. I have maybe a dozen migraines in my life, but this was by far the worst I have experienced.  It persisted for most of the day, and came again, slightly weaker the next day.  It was so bad that I decided I needed to make some changes (I literally laid on the floor/bed for 6 hours the first day).

I felt like I hadn't been sleeping well the last few weeks, so I decided to stop screen time early for myself.  I now put my phone down about 40 minutes before I go to bed, and try not to pick it up again  until about an hour after I wake up.  Then, during the day, I try to only look at my phone occasionally (rather than every few minutes like I had been).  Honestly it has made me feel so much better not to be constantly staring at a screen all day long.  

I also decided that I need to reduce my sugar consumption.  But, I really do love sweet things, so one afternoon, when I was desperate, I put together these truffles.  They are gluten-free, have no added sugar, and are a terrific little dessert or snack when you feel like you need something sweet, but don't want to load up on cookies or cake.    

Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles:
3/4 cup hazelnut meal (I use the Bob's Red Mill brand)
1/2 cup peanut butter, softened to the point of being a little melty
2 Tbs cocoa powder
10 oz dark chocolate (I like Hershey's special dark chocolate chips)
large grain sea salt for sprinkling

Begin by combining your hazelnut meal, and cocoa powder in a medium sized bowl.  Get your peanut butter nice and softened in the microwave (30 seconds to a minute, stirring once or twice), and pour it into your hazelnut meal and cocoa powder bowl.  Stir until the mixture is thick and thoroughly blended.  

Roll about a tablespoon of the dough into a ball, and put it on a silicone mat or wax paper lined cookie sheet.  Do this with the rest of the dough until you have 20 or so small dough balls.  Place in the fridge for about 30 minutes to chill.  

Next, melt about 6 ounces of your chocolate chips in a medium bowl in the microwave (I used this tutorial for tempering chocolate, and it was really helpful).  You want to melt them just enough to get them totally melted and shiny, but not to the point of being really hot or bubbly.  I did mine in about 30 second increments, stirring until they were just melted and pretty warm.  Then add the last 4 ounces of chocolate chips, stirring until they are melted in.  

Now, remove the dough balls from the fridge, and place one in the chocolate mixture, roll it in the chocolate until it is coated, remove from the chocolate with a fork, scraping the excess chocolate onto the side of the bowl, and carefully push the truffle off the fork onto the silicone mat.  Repeat with each truffle.  Top with a small sprinkle of sea salt.  

Let the truffles refrigerate for 2 hours up to overnight, until the chocolate is a nice hard matte shell.  Try not to eat them all, and enjoy!  

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