Pecan Bourbon Truffles

I've always loved candy, especially chocolate.

When I was a kid, we lived a few blocks from a 7-11 convenience store.  The highlight of my day was walking down to the store and choosing an array of candy: Pixie Sticks, Nestle Crunch Bars, those gross wax bottles with the equally-gross liquid inside, etc.  As a child, it was such an amazing adventure.  I wish simple things like that would make me as happy now!

Now, as an adult, I've read about the horrible things that are in conventional candy: genetically modified ingredients, high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, artificial colorings, etc.  This kind of stuff makes me crazy; why do we have a FDA or USDA if they're not looking out for us?

You can buy organic, fair-trade candy, but that can be expensive.  

Have you considered making your own candy?

It's healthier, not filled with questionable ingredients, and pretty darn tasty.

These pecan bourbon truffles are made primarily from pitted dates, pecans, and unsweetened coconut flakes.  You won't even miss out on the added sugar!

If you're worried about not liking the taste or texture of dates, you probably won't even notice they're in there!  They seem like a chewy chocolate nougat.

Ingredients:
1 c. pecans
1 c. medjool dates, pitted (about 9-10 dates)
1/4 c. unsweetened coconut flakes
2 T. pure maple syrup
2 T. unsweetened cocoa powder, or carob powder
2-3 T. coffee-infused bourbon, or to taste  (learn more about infusing your own liquor!)
pinch of cinnamon
pinch of sea salt

dairy-free chocolate, for coating
1-2 tsp. coconut oil
raw cacao nibs, for sprinkling

Directions:
In a food processor, combine the ingredients (except for the coating/topping ingredients) - it's that easy!  Process the mixture until it reaches your desired smoothness level, scraping the sides several times to make sure everything is incorporated.

Take the truffle batter and, using a cookie scoop, scoop out a dollop onto a parchment-lined tray.  Don't worry too much about the shape; you can fix that later.  Repeat until you've used all of the batter.  Once you're done, place the tray into the freezer for about 30 minutes.

When you are ready to coat the truffles, take them out of the freezer and shape them with your hands; you may want to pat them down to give them a more uniform shape.  

After, in an microwave-safe cup, melt about a cup of chocolate chips with the coconut oil.  (Combine both in the cup and microwave for 30 seconds, stir, and then microwave for another 30 seconds.  This should give you smooth chocolate.)

Dip the truffles in the chocolate or dump the chocolate on top of each one.  I do recommend that after you're done coating them, place them back on parchment; they'll be easier to pry off.  Sprinkle with your desired topping.

RAW OPTION: if you want to make these items raw, omit the booze and use my chocolate sauce recipe and dunk your truffles.  So easy.

Enjoy these boozy bites and get creative with your decorating!

Cheers,
-Aileen

This post is affiliated with Vegan Mofo.  Check out #VeganMoFo on social media for ideas and recipes during the month of September.