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By Panni & Paulette

Above picture pretty much tells you what you need to know about these beautiful balls.  They disappear.  I would not normally post two recipes in a row, but have to on account of the season, the crazy smack in the palate these have, and, er… the eating of these scrumptious chocolate buzz balls may have temporarily dulled my creativity for the next “real” article.  Two of my sisters, Panni and Paulette, made and brought these for Thanksgiving.  It is an adaptation of Condolife.com’s “The World’s Best Most Dangerous Rum Balls Ever”.  As that recipe advises, these actually get better with a bit of time, the ingredients getting more and more familiar with each other as the rum enables.  Just like life with people and drinking!

12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate (high quality please)

1/2 cup almond paste

1 cup sour cream

A pinch of salt

8 cups (or three boxes) Nilla Crackers/vanilla wafers (finely crushed)

1 1/2 cups melted butter

1 1/2 cups rum (whatever color, but dark is my favorite)

2 cups pecans, crushed

3 2/3 cup cocoa (again, good quality)

2 cups sugar

Chipotle or cayenne pepper as desired and as withstood

Melt the 12 oz. chocolate  in a double boiler and mix with the sour cream, almond paste and salt. Cream well and set aside. In separate bowl combine wafers, butter, rum, pecans and 2/3 cup of the cocoa. Mix until it holds its shape. Add chocolate-sour cream mixture and knead with your hands until blended and soft. Refrigerate until firm (overnight).  Mix the sugar and remaining 3 cups cocoa together and put it where you think is easiest for the next task–you’ll be rolling the rum balls in this mixture to properly surface them.  With your hands form small (~1″ dia.) balls and then roll them in the cocoa/sugar mixture to coat.  Place them in cookie tin lined with wax paper, or in mini-cupcake holders. For the pepper/last ingredient.  Experiment.  Toss in a pinch to the cocoa/sugar coating mixture and roll a batch in it.  The additional heat of the pepper–the chocolate–the rum–a gift to almost all your senses.  Legendary.