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Posts Tagged ‘valentine’s day’

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I know it’s 7:30pm in the States and the day after Valentine’s Day in Australia but I am physically incapably of letting a holiday pass without making a corresponding dessert. I think it may be a problem. Chronic Seasonalbakingaholic? Sure, that sounds about right.

For this Valentine’s Day, I wanted to make something a little different. EVERYONE makes red velvet something or other. I’m totally guilty of that as last year I made Red Velvet Nutella Breakfast Rolls in the shape of hearts. (side note: the Aussies say “Love heart” when describing the traditional Valentines Day heart…weirdos). They were to die for. I think I had a dreams about those breakfast rolls for days after. BUT, they were kind of cliche.

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So this year, I decided to branch out a little and leave the red velvet for others (my pancakes were technically not red velvet since they don’t have food dye…even though you could easily add it). I decided to go for passionfruit since you want passion for Valentine’s Day? Get it? Get it? Cool. And thanks to this handy cook book I got for Christmas (thanks Matt!), I know that passionfruit and coconut pair well together. Thus, the Coconut Passionfruit Cupcake with Coconut Milk Buttercream was born.

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Coconut Passionfruit Cupcake with Coconut Milk Buttercream Frosting
veganized from SBS.com.au
makes approximately 15

cake ingredients:

  • 1½ cups self-raising flour
  • ½ cup shredded coconut, sweetened or unsweetened, whichever you prefer.
  • ¾ cup coconut milk
  • ¼ cup passionfruit pulp (approximately 3–4 large passionfruit)
  • ¾ cup vegan butter, room temperature
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 2 Ener-G eggs

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Whisk together the flour and coconut in bowl, set aside. Combine the coconut milk and passionfruit pulp in a small jug and set aside. Whisk together the vegan eggs and set aside.

Cream butter for 1–2 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the caster sugar a third at a time and beat for 1–2 minutes after each addition.

Add 1/2 the egg mixture and beat for 1 minute. Add the rest and beat for 1 minute.

Add ⅓ of the flour and coconut and beat on low until just combined. Add half of the coconut milk and passionfruit mixture and beat until combined. Repeat this again and then finish with the final third of the flour and coconut. Do not over beat the mixture or it will become tough.

Line cupcake pans with papers and fill liners 3/4 full. Bake for 15–20 minutes or until skewer comes out clean when tested. Allow cool on a cake cooler.

 Coconut Milk Buttercream Frosting*:
adapted from Dairyfreecooking.about.com
  • 1/2 cup dairy-free soy margarine, room temperature
  • 4 c. powdered sugar
  • 1/2 can coconut milk
  • 1/2 t. vanilla extract
  • food coloring (optional)
Beat the butter until fluffy, about 1 minute. Add half of the powdered sugar and beat for another 1-2 minutes until well mixed. Add the coconut milk and vanilla extract. Beat for another 1-2 minutes. Add the remaining powdered sugar and beat for 1 minute or until well mixed and fluffy. Add food coloring if you wish.
*One of the batches of cupcakes I made come out super fluffy and moist. It was almost the texture of pound cake and suspect I over mixed something. If that happens with yours, I would recommend saving the buttercream for another recipe and going the coconut whipped cream route. I haven’t been able to find an Aussie brand of coconut milk that will separate which is why I opted for buttercream but most in the US do separate.
To make the chocolate hearts:
vegan chocolate, preferably melting chocolates
Line a cookie sheet with wax paper or parchment paper and set aside. Place some vegan chocolate in a plastic baggy and stick it in the microwave. Heat for 15 seconds. Pull it out and mush the chocolate around. Repeat this process until the chocolate is fully melted. Snip the corner of baggy. Pipe hearts onto your prepared cookie sheet. Put it in the fridge to solidify. Once hard, decorate your cupcakes!
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Hope everyone has a great Valentine’s with their special someone or with friends! I’ll tell you how I spent my Valentine’s Day next week. It was kind of hilarious.
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Oh Valentine’s Day. You are here again. For all those couples out there, you put pressure on them to buy awesome things. For all those single people, you just make them feel like crap for being single! It’s a lose, lose situation.

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Fortunately, these pancakes are here for you. If you are looking to gain a few extra points with your significant other, you can double this recipe and serve breakfast in bed. If you are single, then these are perfect to whip up quickly and then eat while snuggled in bed with your favorite book/movie and their leading man. Mr. Darcy? Edward? Noah Calhoun? Aint nothing wrong with that!

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Chocolate Pancakes for One
slightly modified from Chocolate Covered Katie
m
akes 3 largish pancakes

  • 4T all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp plus 1/8 tsp baking powder
  • scant 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2T cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup plus 1T nondairy milk
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1-2 T sugar
  • Optional- Red food coloring or beet juice for a red velvet pancake

* I also made this with whole wheat flour and Stevia for a healthier option and though it was edible, I would recommend the above version instead. The whole wheat/stevia version came out kind of rubbery.

Mix dry ingredients. Add wet and mix. Then make your pancakes!

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Speaking of Noah Calhoun, I accidentally discovered that the local cinema near here is playing the Notebook on Valentine’s Night. I quickly recruited a friend and bought those tickets ASAP! So, I’m a mere few hours away from seeing Mr. Ryan Gosling on the large screen. Happy Valentine’s Day to me!!

 

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Another year, Another Valentine’s Day. This year, it would be really, really great if Ed Sheeran could swing on over to Australia and be my date. I can make dinner and we can rewatch Game of Thrones in preparation for the upcoming season. Or, you know, I’m open to suggestions.

While I wait for my phone to ring, here’s a recipe round up for Valentine’s Day. It’s just a few recipes I thought would work well for that evening. There will be two new recipes coming Thursday and Friday as well. I just want to rephotograph one but I’ve been feeling icky the past few days.  Don’t worry, Ed. I’ll be perfectly fine by Friday.

Breakfast:

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Red Velvet Nutella Breakfast Rolls

Strawberry Glazed Donuts

“Be Mine” Fruit Smoothie

Dinner:

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Peanutty Noodles

Pumpkin Burgers with a side of Beer Fries

Spicy Black Bean and Quinoa Soup, for those facing more snow this week

Pomegranate Margaritas

Dessert:

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Crispy Treats

Dark Chocolate Truffles

The Perfect Chocolate Cupcakes

Strawberry Macaroons

Red Velvet Beet Cupcakes

Dessert for One: For those staying in and flying solo, these pair great with wine, popcorn and a chick flick

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Cookie Dough Truffles

single serving funfetti cupcake

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All I want to do all day is make Valentine’s Day treats!!

I don’t know what has come over me. Half of me is like Grr! Valentine’s Day *insert bitter single person ranting about it being a commercial holiday*

BUT, the other half of me is like, But I just want to stay home all day and bake cute red and pink heart-shaped treats. And put Valentine’s Day Sprinkles on everything. And watch the Notebook while making cute Valentine’s Day cards and crying because Ryan Gosling is probably planning something cute for his real life girlfriend, Eva Mendez, aka, not me. Actually, I’ve move on (sort of)- I’m all about Ed Sheeran right now. I desperately need to get tickets to see him with Taylor Swift this summer or I may die. Not to be dramatic or anything…

Unfortunately, for my Valentine’s day- loving, Martha Stewart-wannabe side, I have that little thing called work that fills up most of my life. So instead of staying home all day and laboring over cute cupcakes with pink hearts inside, or red velvet heart-shaped pancakes, I have to find fast easy dessert that I can do in between work and my life.

Enter heart-shaped Rice Krispie hearts. Cute, easy and able to decorate with valentine’s day sprinkles. yes, please!

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Vegan Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Treats
from A Kind Diet but Alice Silverstone; found on-line here; heart-shapes inspired by My Blessed Life

1 3/4 cups brown rice syrup
1 pinch sea salt
3/4 cup peanut butter or almond butter (Alicia Silverstone suggests all-natural, unsweetened, unsalted. I used Teddy’s which is all-natural and unsweetened. Its like Meatloaf said, “Two out of three aint bad”)
1 box brown rice crisps cereal
1 bag of vegan chocolate chips

Heat rice syrup with a pinch of salt in a saucepan over low heat. When rice syrup liquefies, add peanut butter and stir until well combined and heated through.

Pour entire box of cereal into a large bowl. Pour rice syrup mixture on top. Use your hands to incorporate everything together.

If you are cutting out shapes, line a 9 x 13 baking dish with wax paper. Press mixture into baking dish (mine fit into a 9×13 with enough left over to fill a 9×9). Wet your fingers as your press down to keep them from sticking. If you are using a cookie cutter to cut out hearts, make sure you do not make your rice krispie treats thicker then your cookie cutter. It makes it more difficult to cut. Let cool for 1 hour. Once cool, remove the wax paper from the pan and place on a clean surface (if you are just cutting into squares, just cut them in the pan). Cut out your hearts. (If you do hearts, you can roll the scraps into balls and dunk them in chocolate. I kept those for me cause they’re kind of ugly)

Melt chocolate chips in the microwave or on the stove using a double boiler (I prefer the stove-top method). Once melted, pull off heat and let cool for a minute or so. Dunk the top half of your rice krispies in the chocolate. Top with sprinkles. Let cool for 30 minutes to an hour.

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I apologize that I’m getting this recipe to you so late. I started it last night and then got distracted by the President’s speech (aka, fell asleep about 10 minutes in). BUT on the plus side, there’s only 5 ingredients and it’s super easy to make. You have PLENTY of time to pull this off before Valentine’s Day tomorrow. It would be such a cute surprise in that special someone’s lunch. Or your own!

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Tomorrow morning I will be posting one more Vday recipe (if it comes out), which is so ridiculous since you won’t have time to make it but I don’t care. I’m excited for it and who knows. Maybe you’ll have time to make it after dinner or you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day this weekend.

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It’s Snowing!!

So, I’m not sure where you are but we here in New England are hunkered down under a snow storm. We had a snow day today and it was EXCELLENT! Know what I did? I did laundry. And I watched A LOT of Food Network. A LOT. I only get like 4 channels on my TV in my apartment so I have to take advantage when I have cable.

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So, clearly, I have to watch a million episodes of Chef’s Wanted (Ugh! I hate Anne Burrell almost as much as Sandra Lee but the show is so addicting! ) and cheesy Rom Com’s on TV (why is it that I would never pay money to see a Matthew Mcconaughey movie but when Failure to Launch or How to Lose a Guy is on, I will watch it…again…for the millionth time?).

And you know what goes really well with a lazy day inside watching Rom Com’s? Chocolate truffles! How cliche right?? But they work really well for Valentine’s Day too! They are super rich so it’s easy to limit yourself to one and it’s a much better quality then anything you would purchase on a whim at CVS or the grocery store. So, treat yourself to something special! Or treat your loved one to something special.

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Dark Chocolate Truffles
from Whole Living

  • 8 oz dark chocolate (70 percent cocoa), chopped (I used Chocolove, which I found at Whole Foods and knew I loved)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder, for rolling
  • Assorted toppings: cocoa powder (for an ombre effect, use a few different brands), finely chopped nuts (pistachios, Marcona almonds, hazelnuts), toasted unsweetened shredded coconut, or confectioner’s sugar

Directions:

  1. Heat chocolate, oil, and 3 Tbsp water in a double boiler, stirring, until just melted. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and sea salt.
  2. Transfer to an 8-inch baking dish and refrigerate until mixture is set but still pliable, about 2 hours.
  3. Using a 1-inch scoop or melon baller, scoop out chocolate mixture and transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Coat hands in cocoa and roll chocolate into balls. Refrigerate on parchment-lined baking sheet 10 minutes. You don’t want to eat these right out of the fridge, though. It will be pretty solid. I keep mine at room temp.

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You are really going to want to use a high-quality chocolate for this recipe. This recipe is all about the chocolate so you don’t want to use hershey’s chocolate chips for this. Splurge for the good stuff. As I mentioned above, I used Chocolove. I thought this was appropriate for a Valentine’s Day truffle. Each bar comes with a love poem. Awwww!  Their almond and sea salt dark chocolate bar is A-MAZ-ING. I could eat those things every day. And their dark chocolate bar was no disappointment. Feel free to use your favorite chocolate, though!
 
 
 
Ok, Law and Order: SVU is having a marathon. Clearly, Stabler is calling me!
 
 

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HAPPY VALETINE’S DAY!

I made you doughnuts!!! =D

I don’t know why I’m so excited about this. I’ve made you doughnuts before. In fact, it was the first thing I ever made you.

Maybe it’s because I’ve been dying to make doughnuts for about a week. But I couldn’t make them for myself because, uh, hello? I just made a whole batch of beer fries for myself and my roommates!

Drippy batter. See my note below.

Or maybe it’s because it would allow me to play with these new pans which Target forced me to buy. I went looking for another mini doughnut pan because I only have one and really? Is there anything more annoying then only having one baking pan? But of course, Target didn’t have mini doughnut pans. They only had full size heart doughnut pans. So you know, I had to buy 2, because really? Is there anything more annoying then only having one baking pan?

Either way though, I made you doughnuts!!! Yeah!

Naked!

Strawberry Glazed Baked Doughnuts

Doughnuts
from VeganYumYum

Dry Ingredients:
1 Cup All Purpose Flour
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp  Nutmeg
1 tiny pinch or shake Cinnamon

Wet Ingredients:
1/2 Cup Soymilk
1/2 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
Egg Replacer for 1 Egg
4 Tbs Earth Balance

Preheat oven to 350º F

In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients thoroughly. Combine wet ingredients in a small sauce pan over medium low heat and mix until earth balance is melted. Heat it until about a minute or so after the butter is melted. You want the mixture warm, not hot.

Add wet to dry and mix until just combined. It should form a very soft dough*

Using a tablespoon measure, scoop out dough into your ungreased nonstick donut pan. Smooth out the top of the dough with your fingers, this will make for more even, prettier donuts, but isn’t crucial.

Bake for 12 minutes. They should not be browned on top, but a tester will come out clean. Invert hot pan over a cutting board or cooling rack to release donuts. Allow to cool completely before decorating

*my dough did not look like dough. It looked more like cake batter. The resulting doughnut was delicious though. Very light and fluffy, and so, so tasty.

Strawberry Glaze
from Heather Christo Cooks

2/3 cup strawberries, pureed
½ cup butter
2 ½ cups powdered sugar
1 Tbs or extract
¼ cup hot water

Puree strawberries. In a small saucepan, heat butter until it has melted add the vanilla and powdered sugar. Add the strawberries and stir until it is starting to melt. Add the water (if needed!) to thin the glaze, and whisk it until smooth. Dip your doughnuts in the glaze. YUM!

NOTE: Because the doughnut is so fluffy and spongy, it super absorbs the glaze. I made these the night before for work and they definitely tasted best right after it was glazed as opposed to the next morning. They weren’t super soggy, the glaze sort of just becomes the doughnut. It wasn’t like Krispy Kremes, were the glaze rests on top of the fried dough. Make sense? Good.

I also made chocolate glazed ones with the leftover Nutella mess up frosting…

Those sprinkles…oh man! They came in a container with blue and  lime green sprinkles-not heart sprinkles, just sprinkles. Clearly, I had to pick them out because, clearly, they were ugly and not festive!

….I have issues.

Anyway, I hope you have a great Valentine’s Day!!!

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