Pecans are a popular nut during the holidays. They are harvested in the fall which makes them a perfect ingredient for cooking and baking. Pies, cakes, cookies, bars, toffee, pralines, and even savory items are some of the many ways pecans are used. Oh, did I forget to mention candy? I certainly don't want to leave that out of the mix! Especially because there are numerous ways you can incorporate pecans into your favorite candies. I happen to be a sucker for truffles.
I often times use raw pecans in many recipes. But for these truffles, I prefer to roast them first. I like the taste the roasted pecan brings to the truffle. If you prefer to leave them raw, that is totally acceptable and delicious. You are going to love not only their irresistible taste, but how healthy they are! Notice there are no refined sugars in the list of ingredients. Even down to the chocolate which is a mixture of unsweetened 100% cacao chocolate, a little maple syrup, and some coconut oil. With all of the splurging and sweets that invade our holidays, it's nice to have some clean eating options on the table that really do taste like a treat!
2 & 1/4 cup pecans
1 cup pitted medjool dates
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp sea salt
1 Tbs coconut oil, melted
1 tsp maple syrup
4 oz unsweetened baking chocolate (100% cacao)
5 Tbs coconut oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the pecans out in a single layer and bake for about 10 minutes. Allow to cool. Then place the pecans in the food processor and process until they are finely chopped. Then transfer the pecans to a medium sized bowl and reserve 1/4 cup of the pecans in a smaller bowl for garnish. Wipe out the food processor with a paper towel to prep it for the date mixture.
2. Place the dates, spices, coconut oil, and maple syrup into your food processor. Process until a thick paste forms, almost dough-like. Add this paste to your pecans and combine well. Roll the mixture into rounded tablespoon sized balls. Place the balls on your rimmed baking sheet and place into your freezer for at least 30 minutes.
3. In a small saucepan, melt the chocolate and coconut oil over low heat stirring frequently. Remove from heat once melted and stir in the maple syrup.
4. Dip the pecan balls in the chocolate mixture and place back onto your baking sheet. You will notice the chocolate will start to solidify. You can either dip them in the chocolate one more time or just go with one coat. It's up to you. Then place the baking sheet in your refrigerator to firm up the chocolate. Store them in an airtight container in your refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Makes 2 dozen truffles.