It’s almost Valentine’s Day, my favorite day of the year. Of course my birthday happens to fall on that day and I’ve been spoiled with extra love, candy and flowers my whole life. But I have a special food interest in Valentine’s Day as well, for nothing tastes quite as good when it’s in the shape of a heart or served on a heart adorned plate. At least in my opinion!
My ultimate sweets to make for Valentine’s are the iced sugar cookies that Christina and I decorated together on Sunday. Once again my dear friend tinted all the icing before our decorating date and we spent hours together outlining, filling and sprinkling heart, lip and envelop shaped cutouts. Nothing could make me prouder than seeing sheets full of colorful cookies infused with love making them with my good friend.
And then, my list of culinary favorites for this special day continues with various love-inspired foods. Strawberry scones, cut into small hearts and sprinkled with sugar are a tasty way to wake up your loved ones. Or heart shaped pancakes, cinnamon buns or even French toast — all very simple and delicious to make. For snack time, cut some potatoes — regular or sweet — into the shape of hearts and make crispy potato chips — dipped in ketchup of course for some Valentine’s Day spirit. Cored strawberries naturally look like hearts when sliced and pineapples and melon can easily be cut into small hearts for a fruit salad of love. And then there’s cupid shaped quesadillas, heart-shaped pizza or individual meatloaf hearts for dinner. And how about cutting your beets into the shape of hearts and serving them atop a mixed green salad with a sprinkling of blue cheese and balsamic dressing?
Whatever foods you choose to surprise your family this Thursday, I hope you enjoy a day designed to get creative and show a little extra love. I hope you have fun with food this Valentine’s Day! From my kitchen to yours! xxoo
Heart Shaped Strawberry Scones
1 cup strawberries, diced
2 cups white flour
1/3 cup sugar plus 3 tablespoons for sprinkling
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
2/3 cup cold buttermilk (or cream)
6 tablespoons butter
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Sprinkle the strawberries with one tablespoon of sugar and set aside. In a large bowl, mix the flour, 2/3 cup sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut in the butter using a pastry blender or your fingers until the mixture is nice and crumbled. Gently mix in the strawberries and add the buttermilk. Combine gently, kneading the dough until a nice ball is formed. Place on a surface that has been dusted with flour and sprinkle some more flour atop of the dough. Flatten into a circle ¾ inch thick. Using small heart shaped cookie cutters, cut the dough into the shape of hearts. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet an inch or more a part and bake for 8 minutes on the center rack of the oven. Take the scones out of the oven, sprinkle with the remaining sugar and cook for another five minutes — checking the scones frequently to ensure they don’t burn. If you’re oven has a tendency to get too hot, consider baking the scones at 375 degrees instead.