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Five Faves

Chocolatier picks five flavors to give or get
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Clockwise from top left: Chai Tea Milk Chocolate Truffle, Dark Chocolate Cranberry Truffle, White Chocolate Hazelnut Carmel, White Chocolate Poppyseed Truffle, and Dark Chocolate Truffle with Toasted Cocoa Nibs.

© 2018 Encore Publications/Brian Powers

With nearly 90 flavors of caramels or truffles available at Confections with Convictions at any given time, it’s hard to pick just five favorites. I dreamed up all of the flavor combinations, so each of these has been my favorite at some point. In addition to using unique flavor combinations, we also decorate the chocolates to make them look as good as they taste. When I am asked to put a box of chocolates together, I try to choose those truffles and caramels that not only complement each other flavor-wise, but also look attractive together. These five are an example of that:

Chai Tea Milk Chocolate Truffle

We steep English breakfast tea in cream, blend that with a rich milk chocolate, and add cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, fennel, cardamom, white pepper and cloves. It’s a subtle blend of warm spices and is finished off with a white chocolate swirl on top.

Dark Chocolate Cranberry Truffle

This truffle is 56 percent dark chocolate, with organic cranberries steeped in cream and a touch of orange marmalade. It’s topped with hazelnut croquant — a fancy French word for brittle — and a bit of dried cranberry.

Dark Chocolate Truffle with Toasted Cocoa Nibs

This truffle is a blend of 73.5 percent Venezuelan and 70 percent Peruvian dark chocolates, a blend that makes a dark, mellow chocolate that isn’t bitter or acidic. It doesn’t get much better than that.

White Chocolate Hazelnut Caramel

This caramel has a delicate, melt-in-the-mouth, buttery, coffee, hazelnut flavor. It has hazelnut croquant on one corner, a chocolate-covered cocoa nib on the other and a stripe of dark chocolate down the middle.

White Chocolate Poppyseed Truffle

This white chocolate truffle combines poppyseeds, walnut and vanilla, with a little stripe on top of poppyseeds, which are bluish in color. We don’t see poppyseeds used in this country as much as I think we should, and this truffle has a very nice Eastern European flavor.

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About Our Author: Dale Anderson

Dale Anderson

Dale Anderson, chocolatier and founder of Confections with Convictions, located at 116 W. Crosstown Parkway, spent three years studying and practicing the art of making fine, artisanal chocolates. Since he opened his shop in 2010, he has not only emphasized the use of fair trade, organic chocolate in his products but utilized his store to train youth with criminal records and other barriers to employment, giving them life and work skills as well as paying jobs.