When you are poor, you work with ingredients on hand. When you have kids, you want something simple that they can help make.
Real poverty would not supply the ingredients for these. But temporary poverty, where you are living off your food storage, could. And we made them when we had little else.
Of course candy is fun, but you want it to have some nutritional punch also. We've got that covered - they do have an abominable amount of sugar, but it is, after all, candy. And chocolate. Which isn't very good without the sweetness.
Nothing is simpler than these to make. Not a true truffle, patiently made and whipped. No, this is much simpler. Anybody can do it.
- 2 cups confectioner's sugar
- 1/2 cup nut butter (your choice, we used peanut, it is cheap)
- 1/4 cup butter (the real thing - but you can double it if you want)
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder (Green and Blacks makes these amazing. But Nestle's may have to do because it is cheap also)
- 1 tsp vanilla (the real thing, because it is so much better - but use the artificial if that is all you have because it is cheap)
- Dribbles of milk - seriously, just DRIBBLES or you will overdo it.
Put everything in a bowl except the vanilla and milk. Mix it until the butter and peanut butter are blended in evenly - this will be kinda like doing pie crust or biscuits only you want it finer.
Put in 1 tbsp milk, and the vanilla. Mix.
Add another tbsp milk, mix again.
It should be starting to either darken in color, or it should start barely clumping in pea sized clumps.
DRIBBLE a little more milk in. Mix it again.
Keep doing that until it comes together and forms a firm dough consistency. Don't let it go spreadable like frosting! While this recipe IS just really a buttercream frosting that has less milk in it, it needs to be much stiffer.
When you can pull off a piece and roll it into a ball, without it trying to crumble apart, and without it sticking to your hands, it is ready.
Roll it into 3/4 to 1" balls.
You can roll these in granulated sugar, powdered sugar, cocoa, powdered coconut, chopped nuts, or any other coating, or you can dip them in chocolate of any kind.
We refrigerate to firm them up, but you don't really need to, and if you are going to dip them in chocolate it is probably better that you don't.
- Use almond butter instead of peanut butter, and almond extract instead of vanilla.
- Eliminate the peanut butter, put more butter instead, and you can use orange juice instead of the milk, and add some grated orange peel.
- You can add chopped dried fruits, or dip it in fruit flavored coating.
These are good even with the simplest of ingredients. If you upgrade to a finer cocoa powder, an excellent nut butter, and the best quality ingredients you can get, they can be pretty amazing. You can make them for gifts for some pretty picky people, and they'll never know they were given a little ball of extra stiff buttercream frosting!