Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas in Honduras and Truffles!


There have been Christmas lights and Christmas decorations up all over Tegucigalpa since October, but I have been so busy I have not even had time to think about Christmas. I have been working on several teachings and besides all of that, I have had to keep all of the medical teams on track.

Yesterday during the 2 hour flight delay I went to the Cascades Mall with the SMART Medical Team members. I have not been inside the mall since March or April, so when I saw all the Christmas displays, I waxed nostalgic. I need to call my friends and get my Christmas trees up and in place before it is too late.

On Tuesday and Wednesday of last week, I started making my annual mix of Christmas candies and cookies. All year long, team members bring me Chocolate Chips, Butterscotch Chips, Bakers Joy, Flavorings and stuff to bake with. When December comes around, I start baking. Usually about a week before Christmas I have a Christmas party and invite many of my friends. I place 4 ten foot long tables outside on the front porch (usually it is about 70 degrees) and place about 50 chairs around them and around a hundred people come and go for about six hours.

I serve lots of homemade candy, homemade cookies, homemade cakes and one main entree dish like meatballs and one vegetable. I cover the entire dining room table with sweets!

I have always loved Christmas trees and I have 3 Christmas trees that I decorate every year here in Honduras. A couple of artsy girlfriends come over and we decorate for about 8 hours straight, munching on goodies as we decorate. I always decorate the tables and the house as well as the front door.

I wish I had my postcard collection from when I was in high school here in Honduras with me. In the early 70s my mom and I would go to the flea market every weekend. In fact at one point in time we had a flea market booth. I collected several different things, Van Briggle pottery, Spoke Pattern Depression glass, Snow Babies, small things for a printer's tray and Antique Postcards.

I have all different kinds of Holiday Postcards. In fact, I only collected Holiday and Birthday Postcards. When I was packing to move, I came across many of them and have them packed away to ship to Honduras when I move my furniture. If I had them here now, I think I would decorate with some of them.

I am thinking of all the fun my mom and I have had when we went "Junking" at the flea markets in Arkansas and in Texas. One of my favorites is the Canton Flea Market. There is nothing like the Canton Flea Market! You can buy anything there!

There are NO flea markets in Honduras, maybe that is an idea someone can grab and run with!

Back to last weeks activities... I made Chocolate Orange Truffles, Black Forest Truffles and Gran Marnier Truffles. I had some left over yellow and chocolate cake, so I crumbled it, frosting and all and added the three different liquors to the three batches.

Black Forest Truffles: Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting, with Cherry Kirsch and cherries which have been soaking in Cherry Kirsch getting "drunk" for several months in the refrigerator. The cake crumb balls are then frozen and when they are hard, dipped in melted Milk Chocolate.

Orange Truffles: Yellow cake with white frosting and orange food coloring with orange flavoring and Triple Sec Orange Liquor. The cake crumb balls are then frozen and when they are hard they are dipped in melted milk chocolate. When the chocolate covering is hard, they are then topped with white chocolate colored with orange food coloring and orange candy flavoring. You cannot put regular flavoring in chocolate or it ruins the consistency and the chocolate will not set up and harden.

Gran Marnier Truffles: Yellow cake with white frosting mixed with Gran Marnier Liquor and almond flavoring. Instructions same as above.

I use a "melon baller" where I would have perfectly sized truffle balls and then I freeze them. After freezing them, I dip them in melted chocolate. The trick is to get the chocolate thick enough to cover all of the center filling completely otherwise the filling ooooooooooozes out as the chocolate sets up. I make sure the kitchen is about 70 degrees where the chocolate will set up in a hurry. Last week I had to run the air conditioner to keep it that cool. I had to throw that note in for you Northerners who are shoveling snow!

No comments:

Post a Comment