Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Vegan Truffles


tammylc
 Share

Recommended Posts

Anybody made them or got any ideas about how to? I've got a couple of requests from friends who can't eat dairy. Some looking around online pulls up recipes made from all sorts of odd ingredients. The most promising thing I found wasn't a recipe but a company selling truffles, but they gave a lot of detail about their ingredients. They use coconut milk and coconut oil to solve the fat problem inherent in using other liquids for a ganache. Before I start experimenting on my own, I thought I'd see what the accumulated wisdom of eGullet had to say.

Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My son can't eat dairy due to allergies. I've had success making dark chocolate truffles with rice milk and vegan margarine, and cream of coconut for both fat and flavor. I don't like the taste of soy, but that also works. Also, ganaches based at least partly on fruit puree.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you mean 'Vegan' or 'Non-Dairy?' A true vegan truffle would have no bleached white sugar, often found in chocolate. There is a purification step used in white sugar that uses the bones of animals making it decidely non-vegan.

I make a all-natural non-dairy filled chocolate that uses coconut milk rather than cream. The texture is quite nice and it has a deep rich chocolately flavor.

John DePaula
formerly of DePaula Confections
Hand-crafted artisanal chocolates & gourmet confections - …Because Pleasure Matters…
--------------------
When asked “What are the secrets of good cooking? Escoffier replied, “There are three: butter, butter and butter.”

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you mean 'Vegan' or 'Non-Dairy?'  A true vegan truffle would have no bleached white sugar, often found in chocolate.  There is a purification step used in white sugar that uses the bones of animals making it decidely non-vegan.

Beet sugar isn't filtered with bone char, so it's all vegan. Some cane sugar is okay too, at least in the UK--I don't know about US brands.

I made some nice vegan truffles once with chestnuts, chocolate, sugar and some kind of liqueur. I can't remember the particulars, though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you mean 'Vegan' or 'Non-Dairy?'  A true vegan truffle would have no bleached white sugar, often found in chocolate.  There is a purification step used in white sugar that uses the bones of animals making it decidely non-vegan.

Beet sugar isn't filtered with bone char, so it's all vegan. Some cane sugar is okay too, at least in the UK--I don't know about US brands.

I made some nice vegan truffles once with chestnuts, chocolate, sugar and some kind of liqueur. I can't remember the particulars, though.

Are you sure about the beet sugar? I only ask because a vegan friend of mine in France didn't eat white sugar because of the bone char thing and sugar in France is usually beet sugar.

John DePaula
formerly of DePaula Confections
Hand-crafted artisanal chocolates & gourmet confections - …Because Pleasure Matters…
--------------------
When asked “What are the secrets of good cooking? Escoffier replied, “There are three: butter, butter and butter.”

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok the news of this bone thing is kinda freaking me out ,I DIDNT KNOW!!! .Hows that possible?? WHat about brown cane sugar, or organica brown sugar and stuff like that ??

Ahhh what a world  :blink:

Here's a good link about it:

http://www.vegsource.com/jo/qa/qasugar.htm

First I've heard of it too. Fortunately, I think in my case the people in question are just looking for non-dairy, not hardcore vegan.

Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok the news of this bone thing is kinda freaking me out ,I DIDNT KNOW!!! .Hows that possible?? WHat about brown cane sugar, or organica brown sugar and stuff like that ??

Ahhh what a world  :blink:

Here's a good link about it:

http://www.vegsource.com/jo/qa/qasugar.htm

First I've heard of it too. Fortunately, I think in my case the people in question are just looking for non-dairy, not hardcore vegan.

I looked at several articles and it appears that beet sugar, at least in this country, doesn't use bone char. Interesting.

I guess for hard-core vegans, you have to decide where the line is drawn. One site I found suggested that any food you transport to your home via an automobile may not be strictly "vegan" because automobile tires are sometimes made with animal fats in the manufacturing process. :blink: Alrightly, then...

John DePaula
formerly of DePaula Confections
Hand-crafted artisanal chocolates & gourmet confections - …Because Pleasure Matters…
--------------------
When asked “What are the secrets of good cooking? Escoffier replied, “There are three: butter, butter and butter.”

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jack Frost cane sugar does not use bone char.

Domino's does, but only in certain plants. The breakdown can be found here:

http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/printthread.php?t=3736

When you leave the dairy realm, one important aspect you're losing is the emulsifying effects of the dairy proteins. Emulsification is key to ganache. The smaller you can break down the fat particles, the smoother the mouthfeel will be. Coconut milk is relatively stable, but if you heat it too much, it will break. Even if the coconut milk doesn't break, it can still be a little lumpy when chilled. The addition of a stabilizer is very helpful. Xanthan or guar gum is effective in this role. If you don't want to get xanthan or guar, a little corn starch might help.

The additional of an emulsifier might be helpful as well. Soy lecithin is vegan. You'll want to be careful how much you add, though, as lecithin has flavor issues in large quantities.

The cocoa portion of chocolate is an emulsifier/stabilizer as well. If you can handle a stronger tasting ganache, adding cocoa might help.

Edited by scott123 (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks all for the great information and suggestions.  John, Reenicake, anyone else - do you have proportions you'd be able/willing to share?

Thanks.

Try starting out with a 1:1 ratio of coconut milk : chocolate. You can add some glucose to taste (added to the coconut milk while heating). You may need to alter the amount of coconut milk based on your application i.e. filled chocolates vs. hand-rolled truffles and the type of dark chocolate you use. Cheers!

John DePaula
formerly of DePaula Confections
Hand-crafted artisanal chocolates & gourmet confections - …Because Pleasure Matters…
--------------------
When asked “What are the secrets of good cooking? Escoffier replied, “There are three: butter, butter and butter.”

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess for hard-core vegans, you have to decide where the line is drawn.  One site I found suggested that any food you transport to your home via an automobile may not be strictly "vegan" because automobile tires are sometimes made with animal fats in the manufacturing process.  :blink:  Alrightly, then...

... and what if someone within the production and distribution chain wears leather shoes? :wacko:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok the news of this bone thing is kinda freaking me out ,I DIDNT KNOW!!! .Hows that possible?? WHat about brown cane sugar, or organica brown sugar and stuff like that ??

Ahhh what a world  :blink:

In the book "Nourishing Traditions" it is stated that brown cane sugar is just regular cane sugar with molasses added back in for color and flavor. Sugar in the raw also has molasses added back in and is also processed. Now, whether it is processed with bone char is not addressed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, turns out one of the people is actually hardcore. But I found this page of vegan chocolates, so I at least have an idea of where to start, should I actually want to proceed with the experiment.

http://www.veganunlimited.com/food-chocolate.html

Some, but not all, of the ingredient lists specify that the sugar is beet sugar, or unrefined cane sugar products. Anyone have any experience with any of the chocolates on the page, in terms of flavor or suitability for truffle making? I think the Green & Black has a pretty good reptuation, tastewise...

Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Anyone have any experience with any of the chocolates on the page, in terms of flavor or suitability for truffle making?  I think the Green & Black has a pretty good reptuation, tastewise...

I like Dagoba and Green & Black. I've never made anything with Dagoba, but 's good for eating plain.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, turns out one of the people is actually hardcore.  But I found this page of vegan chocolates, so I at least have an idea of where to start, should I actually want to proceed with the experiment.

http://www.veganunlimited.com/food-chocolate.html

Some, but not all, of the ingredient lists specify that the sugar is beet sugar, or unrefined cane sugar products.  Anyone have any experience with any of the chocolates on the page, in terms of flavor or suitability for truffle making?  I think the Green & Black has a pretty good reptuation, tastewise...

The wrapper of sample Green & Black's 72% I have states, "suitable for vegetarians and vegans" and only contains organic raw cane sugar.

For truffles I use a 2:1 proportion of chocolate to combined liquid, plus fat.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thought I should report back on my first experiment.

I used the Green & Black 72% baking bar referenced below. I did not like the flavor at all on its own. Very green tasting. Blech! But I soldiered on.

I don't usually add sweeteners to my truffles, but I really thought this chocolate needed *something*. I used 144 g chopped chocolate, 96 g coconut milk, and 1 tsp of corn syrup.

They turned out pretty well. The texture was great - the ganache firmed up nicely and was very easy to work with. I coated them in a bit of untempered melted chocolate, then rolled half in cocoa powder and the other half in shredded unsweetened coconut. As for flavor, I thought they were much improved over the plain chocolate, but still not great. I could taste the coconut milk when I went looking for it, but it was a pretty subtle and generic base.

I sold off my test batch at a discount to a friend. She mostly likes them, but agrees with me on the chocolate. I'll have to look for another vegan chocolate that I tastes better. (She only needs non-dairy and not super-strictly, so I can just use proper chocolate and coconut milk for her in the future.)

Edited by tammylc (log)

Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I used the Green & Black 72% baking bar referenced below.  I did not like the flavor at all on its own.  Very green tasting.  Blech!  But I soldiered on.

The Green & Black I like isn't the baking bar (I don't think I've tried that) but the ones more like big candy bars. I really like the Mayan Gold, but that probably wouldn't be good for truffles.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thought I should report back on my first experiment.

I used the Green & Black 72% baking bar referenced below.  I did not like the flavor at all on its own.  Very green tasting.  Blech!  But I soldiered on.

I don't usually add sweeteners to my truffles, but I really thought this chocolate needed *something*.  I used 144 g chopped chocolate, 96 g coconut milk, and 1 tsp of corn syrup.

They turned out pretty well.  The texture was great - the ganache firmed up nicely and was very easy to work with.  I coated them in a bit of untempered melted chocolate, then rolled half in cocoa powder and the other half in shredded unsweetened coconut.  As for flavor, I thought they were much improved over the plain chocolate, but still not great.  I could taste the coconut milk when I went looking for it, but it was a pretty subtle and generic base.

I sold off my test batch at a discount to a friend.  She mostly likes them, but agrees with me on the chocolate.  I'll have to look for another vegan chocolate that I tastes better.  (She only needs non-dairy and not super-strictly, so I can just use proper chocolate and coconut milk for her in the future.)

I called Callebaut and asked them about their chocolate. They said their Organic chocolate is vegan. I have not tried to get it from my supplier yet. It is not in their product list but they should be able to get it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
Thought I should report back on my first experiment.

I used the Green & Black 72% baking bar referenced below.  I did not like the flavor at all on its own.  Very green tasting.  Blech!  But I soldiered on.

I don't usually add sweeteners to my truffles, but I really thought this chocolate needed *something*.  I used 144 g chopped chocolate, 96 g coconut milk, and 1 tsp of corn syrup.

They turned out pretty well.  The texture was great - the ganache firmed up nicely and was very easy to work with.  I coated them in a bit of untempered melted chocolate, then rolled half in cocoa powder and the other half in shredded unsweetened coconut.  As for flavor, I thought they were much improved over the plain chocolate, but still not great.  I could taste the coconut milk when I went looking for it, but it was a pretty subtle and generic base.

I sold off my test batch at a discount to a friend.  She mostly likes them, but agrees with me on the chocolate.  I'll have to look for another vegan chocolate that I tastes better.  (She only needs non-dairy and not super-strictly, so I can just use proper chocolate and coconut milk for her in the future.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This has been a great series since I also have been asked by vegan friends to see if it is possible to make truffles without dairy.

Experimenting with ganache, the best results I've had are with a ratio of 2 oz of coconut milk (a brand that lists guar gum as an emulsifier), 2 oz of semisweet (61%) E. Guittard chocolate, 1 oz of almond praline, and a small amount of corn syrup. The praline adds a bit more fat and body to the ganache. I am very pleased with the stability and shelf life as well--over a week now at room temperature and the ganache is still creamy, nice mouth feel.

Other variations, leaving out the praline, bringing the chocolate up to 3 oz. and adding 1 oz. of coconut butter, produced a much stronger coconut flavor and an odd graniness.

Soy milk was much too low fat to produce a good ganache. Initially it tasted fine, but began to break down within two days, and completely broke down into a grainy mess within 5.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'll have to give that praline idea a try!

Have you checked in with E. Guittard to see if they are using bone char free sugar? I've started using E. Guittard for my regular truffles, but not for the vegan ones because I wasn't sure of the sugar. Also, it is manufactured on the same equipment as their milk chocolate, although it seems like most vegans don't mind that. (People with dairy allergies would, though.)

Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...