A Ferrero Rocher shortage is feared this Christmas after a poor hut harvest in Turkey. It is reported that hazelnut crop levels are lower than usual due to poor weather conditions and insect damage.
The popular chocolate consists of a whole hazelnut surrounded by delicious layers of biscuits, a velvety filling, smooth milk chocolate and finely chopped hazelnut pieces.
I knew recreating this chocolate would be a challenge but I was intrigued to see just how similar I could make them look and taste.
I was also going to opt for a Nutella filling but due to the UK also facing potential shortages of the chocolate spread, I decided to make my ganache.
The biscuit outer shell was also tricky as Ferrero Rocher have a wafer consistency, so I used butter biscuits to smash them with a rolling pin.
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Ingredients to make 15 chocolate balls:
400g milk chocolate
150ml double cream
15 small whole roasted hazelnuts, or any of your choice
100g butter biscuits, crushed into a crumb
100g chopped hazelnuts
To start with I made the ganache which involved heating the milk on the stove, bringing it to a boil and then pouring it over the chocolate.
I left this to cool slightly before covering it with clingfilm and chilling it in the fridge for two hours until it becomes firm.
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Next, I scooped a teaspoon of the ganache into my hand, rolling it into a ball before pushing a hazelnut in the centre.
After, I placed the ganache ball into the crushed biscuits and placed them all into the fridge to chill for an hour or so.
Meanwhile, I melted the remaining chocolate in the microwave and then placed the chocolate ball into the melted chocolate, making sure it was completely covered.
I then placed them all into the chopped hazelnuts, shaking them until evenly coated before returning them to the fridge for 20 minutes.
To get that Ferrero Rocher-like outer coating, I dipped a few of them into chocolate again, leaving some uncovered because I wanted to see if it made a huge difference.
The homemade chocolate balls should be left out of the fridge 30 minutes before eating, making sure to eat them all within a couple of days due to using fresh cream in the ganache.
They tasted delicious and not too dissimilar from the proper version, although the filling made it more of a truffle than a praline.
They took a while to make but if there are none on the supermarket shelves this Christmas, a homemade version will go down just as well.
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