For our housewarming party, I wanted to make a variety of chocolates, not only in flavour, but in appearance also. This honey-thyme chocolate sounded interesting (herbs in sweets!) but its technique of a texture via a wire baking rack wasn’t one I had tried before.
The recipe is from Making Artisan Chocolates by Andrew Garrison Shotts. The yield is only 30 chocolates, so the quantities are quite small. For example, in the ganache, there’s just two-and-a-half ounces of heavy cream and honey, to infuse 3 sprigs of fresh thyme. Only 15 minutes are called for in the recipe, which is a woefully short time for the herb to impart its flavour. By contrast, Michael Recchuiti’s famous Tarragon Ganache calls for a half cup of dried tarragon leaves, infused in 7 ounces of cream overnight.
Anyway, I was most interested in the finishing technique. After dipping each round ganache ball in tempered chocolate, you roll each truffle over a wire baking rack. My wife helped with this part, and soon figured out that you need to wait about 15 seconds or so for the chocolate to start to thicken, before rolling.
To give the chocolates a bit of colour, I used a “fat dispersible food colorant” from Roxy & Rich. After a bit of experimentation, the nicest look was achieved by gently tapping the powder through a small sieve over the chocolates.
These chocolates were just so-so. Some people thought they were coconut-based macaroons! I could barely taste the thyme and would definitely do a longer infusion next time.