How many more days until ♥alentine's Day?
No worry if you didn’t count, I have found some easy,
simple recipes for you to share with your love ones at the last moment…
check them out!
6 ounces good-quality semi-sweet chocolate
Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper, smoothing it out so there are no wrinkles.
Temper the chocolate.
Pour the chocolate on the prepared pan. Smooth the top with an offset spatula so that it is about 1/8 of an inch thick. It should form a rectangle at least 11 inches long and at least 5 inches high. If it exceeds these dimensions, that’s okay too.
Allow the chocolate to sit at room temperature until it is almost set. Once it is somewhat firm on top, take a paring knife and a ruler. Make two rows lengthwise that are 2” high each. Then score the rows crosswise at 2” intervals, to create a total of 10 2-inch boxes. You will probably have excess chocolate on the sides and top of your squares—gather this up for later use.
Allow the chocolate to fully set, and then carefully cut the squares apart.
Rewarm the excess chocolate scraps until they are melted. Use a toothpick, spatula, or pastry brush to paint the sides of the squares with melted chocolate and assemble them into a box. The boxes will have a bottom and four sides, but no top. If you desire a top, make an additional square per box. Carefully place the boxes in the refrigerator to harden until fully set.
Fill the boxes with chocolates, candy, or other small gifts. If the chocolate is properly tempered, it will remain hard and shiny at room temperature and will not require refrigeration.
Makes two 2-inch boxes.
13.5 oz. cream
1/2 bunch mint, finely chopped
1 chili pepper finely chopped
Double shot espresso
17.5 oz. high-quality dark chocolate (semisweet or bittersweet), chopped
Divide cream into three individual pans. Add mint into one pan, chili into the second pan, and espresso into the third pan. Slowly warm each pan to a near simmer and remove from heat, allowing flavor to infuse for 15 minutes.
Place dark chocolate in a small bowl and set bowl over a small saucepan of barely simmering water. Stir constantly until chocolate melts.
Remove pan from the heat and divide chocolate into three small pots.
Return pans of cream to heat and, once hot, strain each pan of cream into one chocolate pot, creating three separate flavored chocolate body paints.
Using 3 small brushes and your imagination, paint away!
My note to you if you haven’t gone to this site. Careful with the chili powder!
1/4 cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder
1 ounces high-quality milk chocolate (such as Lindt, Perugina, or Valrhona), chopped
1/4 cup boiling water
1/4 cup buttermilk
2/3 cup cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 ounces high-quality milk chocolate (such as Lindt, Perugina, or Valrhona), chopped
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup sour cream
4 teaspoons light corn syrup
Organic roses (for garnish)
2 5-inch-diameter cake pans with 2-inch-high sides
Five-inch cake pans are available at some kitchenware stores and restaurant supply stores and online from cheftools.com and amazon.com.
Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 350°F. Butter two 5-inch cake pans with 2-inch-high sides. Line bottom of pans with parchment paper; butter parchment. Combine cocoa powder and milk chocolate in medium bowl. Pour 1/4 cup boiling water over; whisk until mixture is smooth. Whisk in buttermilk. Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt in another medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat both sugars, oil, egg, and vanilla in large bowl until well blended. Add flour and cocoa mixtures; beat until blended (batter will be thin). Divide batter between pans. Bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out with some crumbs attached, 28 to 30 minutes. Cool in pans on racks 15 minutes. Turn out onto racks; peel off parchment. Turn over; cool on racks.
Place chocolate in large metal bowl. Set bowl over saucepan of simmering water and stir until melted and smooth. Remove bowl from over water. Add butter and stir until melted, then add sour cream and corn syrup and whisk until smooth. Let frosting stand at room temperature until thick enough to spread, about 20 minutes. Using serrated knife, trim top of cakes to make level. Cut each cake horizontally in half. Place 1 cake layer, cut side up, on platter. Spread 1/4 cup frosting over, leaving 1/2-inch border. Top with second cake layer, cut side down. Spread 1/4 cup frosting over, leaving 1/2-inch border. Top with third cake layer, cut side up. Spread 1/4 cup frosting over, leaving 1/2-inch border. Top with remaining cake layer, cut side down. Spread 1/3 cup frosting over top and sides. Chill until frosting is set, about 30 minutes. Keep remaining frosting at room temperature. Spread remaining frosting evenly over top and sides of cake. DO AHEAD Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover with cake dome and store at room temperature.
Arrange roses atop cake and serve.
6 to 8 servings
Ingredients (for four treats):
1 cup coconut
1 egg white (buy pasteurized eggs if you can)
5/8 cup cream (just over 1/2 cup)
5 oz. dark chocolate
4 large white paper nut cups (you could also try the mini nut cups if you’d like to make more, or package for smaller treats)
Cacao nibs for garnish (optional)
Lay out your ingredients. The photo shows enough for eight treats (I doubled the recipe above to make more treats). Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Chop your chocolate into chunks.
Place the egg whites in a bowl and whip until they’re frothy and start to form peaks. I used a hand mixer but you could also use a stand mixer. Add the coconut and fold in using a spoon.
NOTE: After I made this recipe, I read that egg whites should be whipped at room temperature for the greatest volume, and also ideally whipped in a copper or stainless steel bowl. The article recommends separating egg whites from yolks them while they are still cold because it’s easier, then bring egg whites to room temperature by putting them in a bowl and then setting that bowl in another bowl of warm water.
With wetted hands or a spoon, press the coconut mixture into the white paper nut cups, covering the base and sides to make a shell. Bake for 8-12 minutes or until the coconut mixture gets nice and toasty brown.
While the coconut is toasting, make the filling. Place the cream in a saucepan over medium heat and cook until almost boiling, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add the chopped chocolate, stirring until the chocolate has melted and the filling is smooth.
Ladle the chocolate filling into the coconut cups and sprinkle cacao nibs on the top. Place in the refrigerator for 15 minutes or until the filling is set. I like them best at room temperature so once set consider letting it sit out a bit before enjoying.
Serve to your sweetie.
6 large egg whites at room temperature
350g caster sugar
1 tbsp. corn flour sifted
25g cocoa sifted
1 tsp. white wine vinegar
Filling and decoration:
200g dark chocolate broken into pieces
400ml whipping cream
50g sifted icing sugar
2 tsp. rosewater
Pink food coloring
Optional sugared pale pink fresh untreated rose petals for decoration
Make this on the day it is to be eaten. Have ready 3 x 23cm circles of baking parchment on baking sheets.
Preheat the oven to 220C/200C.
Using a hand-held electric whisk, whip the egg whites in a bowl until they form stiff peaks, then scatter over the caster sugar a few tablespoons at a time, whisking well with each addition. Gradually whisk in the corn flour and cocoa, and then the vinegar, by which time you should have a very stiff, glossy meringue. Spoon the mixture on to the parchment circles, forming it into heart shapes, lightly swirling the top. Place in the oven, reduce to its lowest setting (or about 130C/110C) and bake for 1½ hours. Remove from the oven and leave to cool. When ready to assemble, melt the chocolate in a bowl set over a pan containing a little simmering water, then leave to cool to room temperature.
Shortly before serving, place the remaining filling ingredients in a bowl and whisk (using an electric hand whisk) until the mixture forms soft peaks, taking care to stop before it turns grainy. Assemble the meringue on a board or plate. Carefully remove the parchment from each meringue and spread one with a third of the cream mixture. Drizzle over some of the melted chocolate. Repeat to make a second layer. Lay the third meringue, spoon over the remaining cream, drizzle the remaining chocolate and scatter over the petals, if using.
Makes 1 x 20cm cake
Don’t forget the ones I’ve posted from last year!!
And that’s not all, I have more ♥alentine's chocolate ideas coming…
happy chocolate day!