A Valentine Treat Recap

In our home, we love celebrating Valentine’s Day!  But not for the reasons that you think; if you missed yesterday’s posting, stop by and check it out.  In our home, the kids and I make the sweets instead of buying them – that is – unless I’m having a lazy type of holiday.  I had fun researching what types of projects I had worked on in the years past, and it made me appreciate why I keep my blog running, even if I don’t find enough time these days to do so.  This year, I believe I’m going to make scones and somehow dress them up to make it fitting for the day, but that remains to be seen on “how.”  Why scones?  Why not?  Actually, I made a batch for a group of people and the reviews came back that they were heavenly.  Some people even said they were the best scones they had ever had, so that must be saying something!  Truth be told, my family was so jealous when I walked out the door with this beautiful batch of scones, and didn’t even get one bite.  So I owe it to them to make a batch.

Enough rambling – break out the recap!!  Enjoy your Valentine’s Day!!

Goat Cheese TrufflesGoat Cheese Truffles – what better way to say, “hey honey, I love you, and I know you love goat cheese! And chocolate!”  True story, I made these for a dinner party, and found my husband eating the leftovers (straight from the bowl, not even rolled up!) and thought, hmmm, there must be something to these little devilishly amazing bites!  These chocolates keep you coming back for more.  Great for a “la-tee-da” type of person, or someone you just want to impress. 🙂  You’re welcome.

 

Red Velvet MadeleinesRed Velvet Madeleines – Need a Valentine Day breakfast that will impress?  Try these little delights!  Perfect compliment with a nice cup of tea, or hot chocolate.  You and your sweet other will enjoy this as a nice change of pace.  Also great for a dessert at the end of the day, especially after a heavy dinner.  Want to jazz it up?  Serve it with vanilla ice cream.

 

 

Chocolate Strawberry ShortcakeChocolate heart shortcakeChocolate Waffles with Strawberries – Seriously, words cannot describe how amazing this breakfast can be.  Or dinner, should you decide to mix it up.  I have two pictures here because I made it the shortcut method with pre-made chocolate waffles, while my lovely blogging friend in Oklahoma showed an even better way to make them if you have the time and equipment.  Here is her link to make her fancy waffles.

 

 

Chocolate Covered Strawberries – a classic, and yet people still buy these rather than try to make them.  Friends, they are not difficult.  Plus your loved one will love you for trying to make them instead of buying them.  Trust me.  If you don’t believe me, look at who is making them in my pictures of that particular blog post.  My kids, when they were tiny!  Don’t like strawberries, roll some raspberries instead, they are a true delight as well.

 

Finished CakeHidden Hearts Cake – Remember when hiding pictures in a cake was all the rage?  Is it still a thing? I’m not sure, but it’s still fun to create, especially for your kids.  Enjoy the tale of my crazy adventure with making this cake. You will definitely get a laugh.

 

 

 

DIY Valentine Bracelet – This is a fun little project that you can create with the kids.  I definitely recommend following the instructions to make it work.  Seems simple enough, but can be a bit tricky if not careful.  Enjoy!

 

 

 

Valentine Cake Pops – I have found myself rolling into a Starbucks buying my kids these sweet bites, and each time I think, “ridiculous what I am paying for these when I know how much it costs to make them!! TONS of them.”  Are they difficult to make? Not if you follow the rules.  And your freezer is your friend when it comes to setting up the cake with the frosting.  I recommend making a red velvet cake with a dark chocolate outer coating – the best!

That’s it for now!  You can search my site for more delights, but I didn’t want to overwhelm you.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

A Merry Christmas – “Best Of” Recap

lights_and_decorations

Some food writers, like myself, often wonder what another food bloggers’ “stats” look like.  Not how many people jump on their site, rather, what was their highest hits during the Christmas season.  I’m here to do that for you today, for I am sure you are more than blessed with recipes being bombarded to you during the holidays.  So, let’s have some fun, and see what my TOP 5 searched for items are!!  (And I must say, these are quite interesting, but there must be good reasons for their choices.)

Number 5: No-Bake Nutella Cheesecake Cupcakes – At first glace, I was quite shocked about this, since I created this in the warm months.  But with holiday craziness, and the love of all things Nutella; I am guessing people search on this topic because of it’s ease to make, the love for cheesecake, and hey, add Nutella. Sold.

Nutella Cheesecake cupcakes

Number 4:  Red Velvet MadeleinesNothing says Merry Christmas than these red beauties for snack or breakfast.  Chocolate butter soft cookie on your plate at 8am?  Yes please!

Red Velvet Madeleines

Number 3:  Chocolate Facial MaskWhat to buy, what to buy?? AHHH!!  Oh, hey, look at this, I can MAKE a gift.  Yes, I believe people have searched for homemade spa items due to rate of creativity that this nation has taken on the past 5 years.  Why buy when it means SO much more to make?

Number 2:  Cheesecake Stuffed Chocolate Covered Strawberry Santa Hats – Ho Ho Ho!!! These cute little bites of dessert have been well received this month.  I can see why!  My family is going to get another round of these Christmas day too.

photo (7)

AND THE WINNER FOR THE MOST SEARCHED FOR THIS HOLIDAY SEASON IS….

Chocolate Covered Christmas Tree!! – The most ironic thing about this whole thing is, I did not create this tree for my blog post.  Yet it is year to year the most sought after item on my blog.  It truly is a work of art, and I have yet to attempt making it.  Has anyone tried it out yet?  If so, please let me know!

strawberry tree

Wishing you all a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!  Maybe you’ll catch another post or two before the new year!?

Red Velvet Madeleines

Red Velvet MadeleinesDo you ever have a cooking or baking utensil that just sits and collects dust?  If so, please help me feel better and let me know what you keep in your kitchen and NEVER use!

Truthfully, I must admit that I have had a madeleine pan in our kitchen that has traveled from house to house, NEVER used, for probably about 8-10 years now.  I was inspired by a movie to make them, and just never tried any recipe out.  So there it sat, with the well used baking sheets and muffin tins, probably begging for attention.  Thank goodness bakeware doesn’t talk or I would have seen a protest sign or a moving sign. LOL

Seriously, though, I have finally tried out a recipe and adapted it to fit my style.  I broke out that pan and conquered…and wondered why it took me so long to try it out.

Do you love red velvet?  I do, but I wanted to try something new out rather than go for the cupcake or cake or cookie or brownie.  I made Red Velvet Madeleines and I am SO SO glad that I attempted the recipe alterations.  The flavors are rich with chocolate and butter.  Enough said.  So without further discussion, the recipe.

Red Velvet Madeleines

Ingredients (adapted from Martha Stewart):

  • 1/2 stick of unsalted butter (4 TBSP)
  • 1 cup of cake flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 TBSP. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 TBSP. red food coloring

Method:

In a small bowl, place cocoa powder and red food coloring together and mix slowly.  If you add more red color, it will become more pasty.  Set aside.  Heat butter to melted and let cool.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Butter and flour madeleine pan.  In a large bowl, blend eggs, salt and sugar until thick consistency.  This takes around 8-9 minutes.  Mix in vanilla.  Fold in flour until mixed together.  Stir in cocoa mixture until mixture is a red color and smooth.  Add melted butter quickly and fold into mixture.  Quickly pour into the madeleine pan and bake for 10 minutes.

This is perfect for a Valentine’s breakfast morning!