*Disclaimer: While I received payment and complimentary products to facilitate this review, all opinions expressed here are my own.
At first, you get rich, decadent chocolate flavor, enveloping your mouth in sweetness, its creaminess lingering on the palate. A pop of nutty texture satisfies your desire for balance, while keeping you engaged and eager to taste more. And then, when you least expect it, you get wave upon wave of vibrant spiciness, in an exciting crescendo, packed with coffee nuances, satisfying and crisp. This is the flavor explosion you experience when you bite into these vegan truffles made with El Yucateco‘s new Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce.
As a food writer, I find myself in the very fortunate position of being able to discover new and exciting products, which deepen my understanding of food and my appreciation of culinary traditions and stories from all around the world. When El Yucateco contacted me and offered to send me the latest additions to their range of habanero sauces, I was overjoyed because I knew I would be in for a treat – and indeed I was 🙂
El Yucateco was founded in 1968 in the city of Merida, Yucatan, Mexico, by Mr. Priamo Gamboa. The history of the brand is fascinating: Mr. Gamboa “was inspired by his father’s pepper business, where he sold fresh habaneros from the Yucatan region in markets in Mexico City. As demand increased, Mr. Gamboa’s father began experimenting with homemade sauces as a way to preserve freshness and real habanero flavor. Building on some of his father’s favorite recipes, Priamo Gamboa founded El Yucateco (…) The sauce’s popularity rapidly spread throughout Mexico, and it wasn’t long before consumers in the United States and beyond demanded the quality and flavors of El Yucateco.” The El Yucateco brand came to be known as the King of Flavor – and the rest was history, as they say.
El Yucateco has released 6 new sauces in 2023. They make 13 sauces in total (7 classic and 6 new), with Ghost Habanero being their hottest, and Grilled Pineapple and Habanero, their mildest. El Yucateco sauces are made from the whole fruit of the pepper, and they are non-vinegar based. As the #1 habanero sauce in the US and one of the top 10 best selling hot sauces of all time, El Yucateco is everyone’s hot sauce favorite.
I couldn’t wait to try El Yucateco’s new Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce! Featuring “a decadent blend of coffee and habanero, perfectly balanced with a slight sweetness,” this sauce came highly recommended to use with ribs, chilis, steaks, and desserts.
Did anyone say dessert? 🙂 Knowing my very sweet tooth, it was clear to me that I would be using this hot sauce in a sweet treat. Since coffee is often added to chocolate to amplify the latter’s flavor, I decided to pair El Yucateco’s Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce with chocolate to make vegan truffles.
I started off by mixing finely chopped dark chocolate and coconut milk in a stainless steel bowl, which I put on top of a pan with simmering water to blend and melt together. Once the chocolate & coconut milk mixture was completely blended, smooth and shiny, I took the bowl off the heat, placed on the countertop, and stirred in vanilla extract, sorghum syrup, chopped nuts, and the El Yucateco Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce.
I put the mixture in the fridge for about 45 minutes until hardened but pliable. I took it out of the fridge and rolled it into medium-size balls using my hands. I rolled each ball into freshly melted dark chocolate, and placed on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
I decorated the truffles with freeze-dried powdered fruit and edible gold dust, and returned them to the fridge to chill for another 30 minutes.
And here they were, out of the refrigerator, in all their beauty:
I was overjoyed to discover the superb balance of flavors and textures in these truffles. The combination of rich chocolate, sharp freeze-dried berries, and exuberant El Yucateco’s Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce was a mouthwatering delight:
Like a kid in a candy store, I couldn’t stop marveling at these delicious beauties, their goodness enhanced by the spectacular flavor of El Yucateco’s Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce:
Almost too pretty to eat – almost 🙂
The best treats come with an element of surprise – such is the case with these scrumptious vegan truffles I made with El Yucateco’s Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce. From the exciting story of their creation to the vibrant present packed with new flavor additions, El Yucateco builds its hot sauce repertoire with a commitment to excellence and authenticity which is a joy to see. The King of Flavor brings its magic to the dining table, from appetizers to desserts, its reputation unsurpassed. A fascinating past, a glorious present, a super exciting future.
Vegan truffles with El Yucateco Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce
- 3.5 cups dark chocolate, chips or chopped, divided
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 4 tsp El Yucateco Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce
- 1 tbsp maple, sorghum or date syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans
- Powdered freeze-dried fruits, for decoration (optional)
- Edible gold dust, for decoration (optional)
- Fill a medium-size pot with water and bring to boil.
- Combine 2 cups dark chocolate and coconut milk in a medium-size heat-proof mixing bowl. Place bowl on top of the pan with simmering water. Once mixture is completely blended and melted, take bowl off the heat, and place on the countertop. Add vanilla extract, syrup of choice, chopped walnuts/pecans, and El Yucateco Habanero & Coffee Hot Sauce. Mix with a spatula until well combined.
- Put mixture in the fridge for about 45 minutes or until hardened but pliable. While mixture is chilling, melt the remaining dark chocolate over the pan with simmering water or in the microwave (30 second-intervals).
- Take mixture out of fridge and roll into medium-size balls. Roll each ball into the freshly melted dark chocolate, and place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Decorate truffles with freeze-dried powdered fruit and/or edible gold dust, as per your preferences. Place cookie sheet with truffles in the fridge to chill for another 30 minutes. Serve chilled or at room temperature.