Rocher Truffles

I'm back in full Christmas mode so get ready for some festive inspiration! I've been cooking and baking like there's no tomorrow for the past three weeks (am so tired!), savory recipes for clients/collaborations and also some sweet ones that will make an appearance here on the blog like these cute vegan chocolate hazelnut truffles. They are inspired by the famous Ferrero Rocher praline treats but way healthier, easier to make, more intensely chocolaty and (let's be honest) after making several batches and eating more truffles than I should, I can assure you that mine taste better, they are so melt-in-your-mouth delicious!...sorry Ferrero but I don't want to put your palm oil and concentrated butter in my body!
This is definitely the kind of treat for all the chocolate lovers, especially those who can't live without dark chocolate like myself; they make such a nice homemade Christmas gift for your loved ones or even for an office secret Santa. Note: I won't be held responsible for any poisoning...just a reminder in case you want to kill your boss and decide to add some lethal ingredient to these truffles. ;-p
That's all for now, still gotta answers a few e-mails, finish a new blog post and get ready for my workout. Can't believe november is almost over and the year is coming to an end, where did 2017 go?! It's been one crazy year for me in a not-so-positive way but looks like at least it's ending pretty well cause a new project is on the horizon (crossing fingers).

Rocher Truffles
(yield: 20 truffles)

1/4 cup unsweetened almond butter.
2 tablespoons agave or maple syrup.
2 tablespoons pure cocoa powder.
100 g (3.5 oz) approximately roasted hazelnuts.
150 g (5.2 oz) dark chocolate 70-72% cocoa, for coating.
Edible gold glitter, to decorate (optional).

- For a more intense hazelnut flavor you can use hazelnut butter instead.
- Reserve around 20 whole hazelnuts to fill each truffle.
- I couldn't find organic chopped hazelnuts (they're usually available, though) and chopped mine using my food processor. If your processor is pretty powerful be careful not to ground the hazelnuts, just use the pulse button and work in small batches.

Chop the hazelnuts using your food processor using the pulse mode, be careful not to over-mix and pulse just for a second. Remember to reserve around 20 whole hazelnuts to fill the truffles later.
In a medium mixing bowl and using a silicone spatula or a wooden spoon combine together the almond butter, agave syrup and cocoa powder until well mixed and a thick dough forms. Cover with plastic wrap and let it cool in the fridge for around 10 minutes to harden.
Scoop 1/2 tablespoon of dough per truffle and roll into balls using your hands but working quickly cause they'll get soft very easily. Don't forget to put a whole hazelnut inside each truffle. If they are too soft you can put them back in the fridge for a little bit so they can keep their round shape with no problem. Roll in the chopped hazelnuts and transfer to the freezer for 5 minutes, they need to be very cold before covering with the melted chocolate.
Meanwhile melt the dark chocolate using the double boiler method or bain marie.
Carefully dip each truffle into the melted chocolate and transfer to a lined baking sheet. You can repeat the process if necessary or if you want a thicker coating.
Let the truffles set in the refrigerator until the chocolate hardens and they will be ready to serve!
Store them refrigerated in an airtight container to avoid strong odors.