Friday, March 18, 2011

Vegan Tropical Truffles: "We Should Cocoa" March Challenge

There are a lot of great things about being adventurous with chocolate, though the stacks of dishes generated as a result is not one of them. To keep myself inspired when I’ve managed to use nearly every measuring cup and spoon in my kitchen, I consider the great things. Great things like discovering unique but delicious additions to chocolate treats.

Like lime. Remember those thumbprint cookies? My grandmother even specifically requested some at Christmas. That’s how delicious they were. So when I saw that this month’s “We Should Cocoa” challenge, hosted by Chele, dared us to create a chocolate treat that involved lime, I knew what I needed to do.

Tropical truffles. Yes. Coconut and lime. And, obviously, chocolate.

Just for kicks, I also made them vegan. You may wonder how I did this. It’s simple, really. Read on.

Vegan Tropical Truffles

8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped (Scharffen Berger 70% cocoa bittersweet)

6 ounces unsweetened coconut flakes

Zest of four limes, divided

¾ cup white sugar

Begin by melting the chocolate over low heat; set aside. Run the coconut flakes through a food processor until smooth. According to my experience and Heather’s directions on how to use this trick that she pioneered, this takes about 15 minutes.

The great thing about this homemade coconut butter is that it serves two functions. The first, and most obvious, is that it gives the truffles a subtle coconut flavor. The second is that it serves as a cream replacement for these vegan treats.

To complete the ganache, add the melted chocolate to the coconut butter, pulse several times until the mixture is uniform. Add ¾ of the lime zest to the bowl, pulse a couple of times to incorporate. Chill the ganache, stirring frequently, until it is firm enough to hold shape; roll into ½ inch diameter balls.

Combine the sugar and the remaining lime zest. Roll each ganache ball in the sugar mixture until well-coated.

These beautiful, vegan treats are ready to enjoy immediately.

Thanks for the challenge, Chele. And I do believe that we should cocoa again next month.

Have you made vegan truffles? How did you replace the cream?


  1. ....*Wow*. Those look reaaaaaally good. I've recently discovered a love for coconut with my chocolate, but had never considered incredibly appealing it sounds! This is definitely something I'm going to have to try out. ^_^

  2. Holy cow...I am obsessed with the coconut/lime combo ever since making some coconut lime rice pudding a few weeks ago. I NEED to make these. Love the addition of the lime zest on the outside of the truffles. Makes them so pretty - your photographs are looking beautiful by the way.

    You forgot the third great thing about homemade coconut butter...licking the food processor clean. ;)

  3. I'm trying to be more open-minded about coconut, but don't need to try very hard with these babies. They sound awesome! I had no idea that you could make coconut butter that way, but it makes sense. I love that you coated them in lime zesty sugar.

  4. They look great!! I've actually never made truffles before and I think that needs to change!

  5. Okay, now I really really do have to try to make coconut butter again, after the first time failed. I seriously don't know what happened. I processed for over an hour and the food processor smoked and NOTHING HAPPENED.

  6. @Hannah Make sure you periodically scrape down the sides of the bowl. And under the blades.

  7. These sound fantastic. I can't imagine desiccated coconut turning to coconut cream, but I'll have to try it. Thanks for taking part in this month's We Should Cocoa.

  8. oooh these look good! I love truffles especially oreo truffles :)