Baking enthusiast Sally McKenney Quinn is the author of the popular blog and cookbook Sally’s Baking Addiction as well as a food blogger for PEOPLE.com. Check back each month for her latest easy-to-follow recipes! You can order her new cookbook, Sally’s Candy Addiction, here. Warning: Don’t read when hungry.
There’s no better time than now to enjoy Irish whiskey in all forms, including in dessert. St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner, so I whipped up some boozy chocolate bliss to celebrate.
Have you ever had a rum ball around the holidays? The idea is quite simple. Take cookie crumbs (I prefer vanilla wafer cookies), rum, cocoa powder, a little confectioners’ sugar, honey, and finely chopped pecans and roll it all up. They’re sweet and chewy with a brownie-like flavor… with booze on the side. They’re the perfect adult indulgence.
Courtesy Sally McKenney Quinn
Today we’re using Irish whiskey and covering them in chocolate. I covered some in extra cookie crumbs, but the chocolate were an obvious favorite. The cocoa, honey, and cookie flavors aren’t overpowered by the whiskey; rather, all the flavors come together seamlessly. You’ll love it.
Speaking of flavor, I recommend you toast the pecans to bring out their wonderful flavor and add a little orange zest to compliment the chocolate. No party is complete without them!
Courtesy Sally McKenney Quinn
Whiskey Chocolate Truffles
Makes 40 truffles
1 ⅓ cups finely chopped unsalted pecans
38 Nilla Wafers cookies, ground into crumbs
½ cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tbsp. natural or dutch-process cocoa powder
2 tbsp. honey
¼ cup Irish whiskey
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 tsp. orange zest
10 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped OR 1 extra cup crushed Nilla Wafers
1. Preheat oven to 300°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Spread chopped pecans on top and toast for 8 minutes. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before handling. Set the lined baking sheet aside to use again in step 4.
2. In a large bowl, stir together the pecans, cookie crumbs, confectioners’ sugar, and cocoa. Add the honey, whiskey, vanilla extract, and orange zest and stir to combine. The mixture will be a little sticky. If you find it’s more on the dry side, add 1 Tablespoon more honey or whiskey. Chill the mixture in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before forming into balls. Chilling makes the mixture easier to work with.
3. While the mixture is chilling, get your toppings ready. If using the chocolate, melt it in a double boiler or use the microwave and melt in 20-second increments, stirring after each.
4. Remove chilled mixture from the refrigerator and, using a spoon or cookie scoop, roll into 1-inch balls. Roll into the cookie crumbs or dunk into the melted chocolate. Place onto the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining balls. Serve immediately or cover tightly and chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Make ahead tip: These are wonderful for making ahead because their cocoa, honey, and orange flavors intensify after a couple days. Layer balls between sheets of parchment or wax paper and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks or the freezer for up to 2 months.
Prep time: 45 minutes
Total time: 1 hour, 45 minutes