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!

Dark Chocolate Chili Truffles

Chile TrufflesWho is getting geared up for Valentine’s Day?  We bakers tend to plan, and I’ve already started planning for the fun holiday.  I know some of you aren’t into it, I get it… it’s a made up holiday.  But listen, when you have children, perspective really changes, and it’s fun to see the house be covered in  cut-out hearts.  Their sweet little spirits lift as I put up some heart decorations and fun faux flowers in their rooms.  It’s a reminder that while February may be cold and dreary, it can be filled with warmth and love.

Need a little heat in your home or better yet, your relationship with your loved one?  These Dark Chocolate Chili Truffles will definitely give a little “kick!”  I used a simple bar of Chili Chocolate from Lindt to help speed things along, but if you are the daring type, why not try to use regular dark chocolate and add the heat with spices freehanded?

Taste result?   LOVE. It has a wonderful dark flavor and then packs a balanced heat at the finish.  My husband said that they are his new favorite truffle, but he’s a pushover with all dark chocolate truffles.  “Twist his arm,” as they say.

Method:Chili chocolate

  • 1 bar of Lindt Chili  Dark Chocolate (Target sells them)
  • 3.5 oz of heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla
  • Cocoa powder for dusting

Chop chocolate to small bits and set in a glass bowl.  Melt chocolate in microwave for around a minute to a minute and half.  In a saucepan, heat up whipping cream until it almost boils.  Remove from heat immediately and skim off top with a spoon to remove.  Pour whipping cream (warmed up) into chocolate and stir until it’s completely blended into a beautiful chocolate.  Add a little vanilla and stir.  Cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for an hour or overnight is fine too.  Scoop with a melon baller or TBSP measure and quickly roll.  This is when your hands will quickly be covered in gooey chocolate if you don’t move fast.**  Roll into cocoa powder and set aside.  Don’t fool around with letting the chocolate in the bowl warm up.  The batch is super soft and you should keep them chilled in the fridge until ready to eat.

**Tip: Keep paper towel handy to wipe hands dry between each truffle rolling

Enjoy!

Goat Cheese Truffles

Goat Cheese TrufflesMy sister and I held a chocolate dinner party with a bunch of gals and we had such a great time!  The food was outstanding, and each dish included chocolate of some sort. (Except 2 side dishes – mashed potatoes and asparagus.)  My job was to bring to the party, the appetizers, which I shall happily blog for you soon, and the famous goat cheese truffles…

I grabbed the recipe from Food Network – George Duran, and I really wouldn’t change a thing on this recipe, except perhaps to coat the truffles with tempered chocolate.  That’s about it!  I went with his recipe, using cocoa to coat the ganache and it was outstanding!!  The most unique part of this truffle is the stages of flavor that ran in my mouth.  First the cocoa… I used Starbucks’ hot cocoa for the outside of the truffle, then the elegant dark chocolate flavor, and then the wonderful taste of goat cheese lingered afterward.  It was sweet heaven!

Ingredients:

  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 6 ounces fresh (mild) goat cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sweetened cocoa powder, sifted
Directions:

In the top of a double boiler, or in a metal bowl set over a pot of simmering water (make sure the water does not touch the bowl),melt the chocolate, stirring until it is smooth. Set the melted chocolate aside to cool for a few minutes while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

In a bowl whisk together the goat cheese, sugar, and vanilla until it is light and fluffy. Whisk in the melted chocolate until it is well combined. Chill, covered, until it is firm, at least 1 hour.

To form the truffles, take a heaping teaspoon of the chocolate/cheese mixture and lightly roll it into a ball with your hands. Roll the finished truffles in the sifted cocoa powder, set them onto a baking sheet lined with waxed paper, and chill until they are firm, about 30 minutes. The truffles can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

I really had to laugh about the 3 days storage time… who could really keep truffles like these stored that long???  We ate our batch!! Of course, I did have lots of help from the group of gals.  And my sweet family; they too enjoyed, no, SAVORED the taste of the truffle.