Truffles are just about the easiest, hardest-to-screw-up candy there is, and this recipe from the chocolatier behind San Francisco’s Charles Chocolates is as simple as it gets. Just pour warm vanilla-infused cream over chopped bittersweet chocolate, whisk until smooth, and chill until set. Then scoop out small mounds of the hardened chocolate, roll them into balls with your hands (imperfections in the shapes give them extra charm), and dust with unsweetened cocoa powder. Serve these little treats as the elegant parting shot at a cocktail or dinner party, or package in ribbon-tied cellophane bags or tins to give as impressive holiday gifts.
What to buy: We love Guittard Chocolate Company’s 72% Cacao Quetzalcoatl Bittersweet Chocolate, but any quality chocolate containing around 70 percent cocoa solids will do.