Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Maple Balls

You want to know my biggest pet peeve? Well, I'm going to tell you it anyways. I hate when people say desserts are too rich. What does that even mean?
That you're a big wimp and can't handle too much awesomeness. That's what. Candies and truffles and desserts are SUPPOSED to be sweet. Get with it.


I'm no wimp. I mean, I can eat so many of these that I have inch thick sweaters of plaque on my teeth.

Ew. Not really. But I do love em.

On Mom's side of the family there is a great debate on which is better... buckeyes or maple balls. For years and years at Gramps and Beanie's I would have a bite of a buckeye and then a bite of a maple ball and then another bite of buckeye, trying to decide which one I liked better. I devoured entire tins of these chocolatey confections trying to decide. I still don't know.

Nobody knows.

Anyways, these little sugar bombs are not for the light of heart. They're super sweet, super nutty, and super mapley. So if your sweet tooth is as relentless as mine, you will enjoy them. Very much.

Maple Balls
Makes about 40 (I think. heh.)

7 oz. sweetened condensed milk (half of a can)
1/4 cup softened butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 teaspoon maple extract
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3/4 cup chopped walnuts

2 cups chocolate chips
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
2 tablespoons butter

More walnuts for topping (optional)

With a mixer, beat together the sweetened condensed milk, butter, extracts, syrup, and salt. Add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until the mixture is doughy. You may need a little more or less that 3 1/2 cups. Roll the dough into small balls and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Refrigerate or freeze until they're all solid.
Melt the chocolate chips with the shortening and butter in the microwave with the power turned down to 50% (or in a double broiler). Stir every 40 seconds until smooth.
To dip the balls, place one at a time on a fork. Dunk it in the chocolate then tap the fork on the edge of the bowl letting the excess chocolate drip back into the rest of the chocolate through the fork tines. Place the coated ball back onto the sheet and top with a piece of walnut.
Let them harden completely before you touch them.

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