Here in Kentucky, we take our bourbon seriously. We all have a favorite brand (I'm a Maker's Mark girl). Some of us even
In my family, it just isn't the holiday season until somebody makes a batch of bourbon balls. These are adapted from my Great-Aunt Marie's recipe, and are my go-to holiday treat. I love to make up little bags or boxes to give as last-minute presents or to take to holiday gatherings. The melted chocolate is a little tricky, but they're so worth the hassle.
- 1 to 2 cups good bourbon whisky (preferably Maker's Mark)
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1/2 to 1 cup whole pecan halves (optional)
- 1 two-pound bag of powdered sugar
- 1 stick butter, softened
- 1-2 bags semisweet chocolate chips (preferably Ghiradelli)
- paraffin wax
- Place 1/2 to 1 cup of chopped pecans in shallow bowl. Pour Maker's Mark over nuts, immersing completely. Cover and let soak 12 hours to overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place pecan halves in shallow pan and toast lightly for about ten minutes.
- Cream butter in stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Combine bourbon-pecan mixture with just enough powdered sugar to form a stiff ball. Refrigerate to let stiffen slightly.
- Roll dough into walnut-sized balls.
- In double-boiler (or a sauce pan placed over a cooker full of boiling water), add a third to a half a bag of semisweet chocolate chips and a small shaving of paraffin wax (no more than 1/4 cup). Heat until just smooth. Dip dough balls into the chocolate mixture. The key is to coat them quickly and make small, frequent batches of melted chocolate.
- Place bourbon balls on wax paper to cool. Top each with a toasted pecan half, if desired. Results are better if you leave them to cool at room temperature rather than in the refrigerator.