This recipe originally appeared on The Nosher.
These dessert truffles are a play on the classic Iraqi haroset of date molasses (known also as date honey or silan) and chopped walnuts.
Pressed baking dates are available at Middle Eastern and some kosher supermarkets, as well as online. Alternatively, you can use pitted dates (details in the recipe.)
1 cup chopped walnut pieces
13 oz package pressed baking dates or 10 oz pitted medjool dates
8 oz dark (semisweet or bittersweet) chocolate, chopped
1 Tbsp olive oil
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Spread walnuts on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 5 minutes. Shake the baking sheet, then toast for 5 to 7 minutes longer, until walnuts turn darker in color and are fragrant. Let cool completely.
Place the walnuts in the bowl of the food processor and pulse until they are finely chopped; reserve some of the more powdery nuts for decoration (a few tablespoons).
Meanwhile, if the pressed dates seem dry, you can soften the opened plastic package of the dates for 15 seconds or so in the microwave.
If you’re using whole dates, soak them in ½ cup hot water in a bowl. Let stand for 15 minutes then transfer to a food processor and run to create a smooth paste.
Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Put softened dates in a large bowl. Add the chopped walnuts to the softened dates; use your hands to press the mixture together until the nuts are evenly incorporated. Pinch off pieces and roll them into 1-inch balls, placing them on the baking sheet.
Melt chocolate and oil in a microwave-safe bowl in 30-second segments. Stir the chocolate with oil until it is smooth. Let cool for about 1 minute.
Use a fork or skewer to dip each ball in the melted chocolate until completely coated. Return them to the baking sheet as you work; sprinkle the reserved chopped walnuts on top. Put the haroset truffles in the fridge for about 20 minutes to help the chocolate set.
Keep haroset truffles in a sealed container in the fridge up to 10 days. Remove from fridge 15 minutes before serving. PJC