Eat and Drink Make François Payard's chocolate truffles for Valentine's day By MELISSA KRAVITZ Melissa.Kravitz@amny.com Updated January 23, 2016 11:10 AM Print Share fbShare Tweet Email With Valentine's Day on a Saturday this year, why not opt for a night in instead of fighting the NYC crowds? Chef Francois Payard believes that there's nothing more romantic than a homemade chocolate-- but he doesn't go around popularizing that theory: it's bad for business! His Grand Cru Chuao Truffles are available at Francois Payard patisseries, but try your hand at making this easy treat for a sweetheart. The key to a successful chocolate is high quality ingredients. Try chef-recommended lepicerie.com, New York Cake and Bake or your local specialty food store. Ingredients: 17 ounces (482 grams) Valrhona Grand Cru Chuao chocolate, finely chopped 2½ tablespoons (50 grams) light corn syrup 2 cups (464 grams) heavy cream 1 fresh vanilla bean Coating: 9 ounces (255 grams) bittersweet chocolate, chopped 1?cups (157 grams) unsweetened alkalized cocoa powder Special Equipment: Pastry Bag with a 1?4-Inch Plain Tip (Such as Ateco #2) 1. Chop the chocolate Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz This is to make the interior of the truffles. Watch your fingers! 2. Place chopped chocolate and corn syrup in a large bowl Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz Set aside. 3. In a medium saucepan, scrape the vanilla bean into the heavy cream Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz Bring the heavy cream to a boil. 4. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz Let stand for 30 seconds, allowing chocolate to melt. The less you touch the chocolate, the better, Chef Payard advises. With chocolates, hands-off is best. Who knew being a chocolatier could be so simple? 5. Whisk until smooth Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz Let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Place the chocolate mixture in the refrigerator, stirring occasionally, until it is the consistency of pudding, about 20 minutes. It should look shiny! 6. Make the truffles! Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz Have a baking sheet lined with parchment paper ready. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a ¼-inch plain tip with the chilled chocolate mixture. Pipe out ¾-inch mounds of the mixture onto the baking sheet. Chill the mounds for 15 minutes. 7. Prepare to coat the truffles Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz Fill a medium saucepan one-third of the way with water and bring to a simmer. Place remaining chopped chocolate in a medium bowl and put over the simmering water. Stir until chocolate is completely melted. 8. Coat the truffles Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz Place the cocoa powder in a shallow dish or pie pan. Using your palms, roll chocolate mounds into balls. Dip the truffles, one at a time, into the newly melted chocolate. Remove the truffles with a fork, allowing excess chocolate to drip off. Using a fork, immediately roll the truffles in the cocoa powder, coating them completely. Store the truffles in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to 2 weeks. Voila! Photo Credit: Melissa Kravitz Merci, Chef! By MELISSA KRAVITZ Melissa.Kravitz@amny.com Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Comments We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.