Chocolate Espresso Bites

Chocolate Espresso Bites
These delicious little chocolates are easy to make and are pretty to serve. If you are not a fan of coffee, you can alter the recipe by eliminating the espresso powder and topping them with a chocolate covered almond – or whatever you like!

Try to use a really good quality bittersweet chocolate and chop it finely with a Chef’s knife – not in a food processor. The unsweetened chocolate is sold in the grocery store near all of the baking supplies. It comes in a box of 8 individually wrapped one-ounce pieces - this is not chocolate you want to eat on it’s own since it doesn’t have any sugar in it - but it provides a nice balance to the bittersweet chocolate. And if you like your chocolate more on the sweet side, use semi-sweet chocolate in place of the bittersweet.

They also make a nice addition to a brunch buffet or as chocolate to put on the pillow of someone you love!

1. Heat the heavy cream, instant espresso powder, sugar and butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Bring to a boil.
2. Place the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl. Pour the boiling cream mixture over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir until the chocolate is smooth and totally melted. If the chocolate is not completely melted, you may put it in the microwave for 10 seconds and then stir.
3. Place foil cups in miniature muffin tins. Use a pastry bag to pipe the chocolate ganache into the foil cups. Top each cup with a chocolate covered espresso bean. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
4. These last for at least two weeks in the refrigerator and could also be frozen for several months – but I don’t think they will stick around that long!

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