Thursday, February 10, 2011

Delicious Chocolate Ideas for Valentine’s Day IV

    I have told you, I L.O.V.E. alentine’s…

    remember back then when we all exchanged

    “Be Mine” candies

    image Barbie or Looney Tunes cards

    imagehugs and kisses

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    in school?!

    Tell me about the good times you had about Valentines from your old days?! I’d love to hear it… leave comments! We all love to share!

    Anyho, I’ve found some of the cutest, easiest chocolates for Valentine’s…

    check them out!

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    Ingredients:

    2/3 cup butter, softened

    2/3 cup sugar

    1 egg

    1 tablespoon lemon juice

    2 cups all-purpose flour

    1/3 cup strawberry drink mix

    2 teaspoons baking powder

    1/2 teaspoon salt

    Ingredients for glaze:

    1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

    1 teaspoon shortening

    Ingredients for frosting:

    1/3 cup butter, softened

    2 tablespoons strawberry drink mix

    1/8 teaspoon salt

    3 cups confectioners' sugar

    3 to 5 tablespoons milk

    Directions:

    In a small bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and lemon juice. Combine the flour, drink mix, baking powder and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/4-in. thickness. Cut with a floured 2-1/2- to 3-in. heart-shaped cookie cutter. Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 8-10 minutes or until set and edges begin to brown. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely. In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth. Spread over cookies; let stand until set. In a small bowl, beat the butter, drink mix and salt until blended. Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar. Add enough milk to achieve desired consistency. Decorate cookies.

    Yield: about 2 dozen.

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    Gluten Free Valentine's Day Cake Pops

    Ingredients:

    1 Chocolate Cake, from The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook, page 84 (view PDF)

    2 cups dark chocolate chips 73% cacao or white chocolate chips

    1 package gluten free organic sprinkles

    Special Equipment:

    1 heart muffin pan

    22 paper lollipop sticks

    2-4 styrofoam blocks

    Directions:

    Bake Chocolate Cake as directed on page 84 of The Gluten Free Almond Flour Cookbook.

    Cool cake completely. Once cooled, crumble cake into a big bowl, making sure there are no large pieces. Cake mixture will be very moist, no need to add frosting or jam. Massage cake mixture with hands. Press mixture into heart shaped mold, then remove immediately and transfer to a parchment lined plate. Place plate of hearts in freezer for 1-2 hours until very solid. Remove one heart at a time from freezer. Dip about ½ inch of the tip of a lollipop stick into melted chocolate. Insert the lollipop stick straight into the bottom of the heart, pushing about ⅓ of an inch deep. Holding stick with heart attached, dip entirely into melted chocolate, until covered. Make sure chocolate coating meets at base of lollipop stick; this helps secure heart to stick. Twirl any excess chocolate coating off the cake pop so it is evenly coated. Apply sprinkles (if desired). Place stick of cake pop into styrofoam block. Complete with remaining hearts and allow to set completely.

    Serve your gluten free Valentine's Day Cake Pops!

    NOTE: You can store these gluten free cake pops in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

    Makes about 22 Gluten Free Valentine's Day Cake Pops

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    Molten Chocolate Lava Cake

    Ingredients:

    4 tablespoons unsalted butter

    6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

    2 teaspoons instant espresso powder

    ¼ cup sugar

    ¼ cup cornstarch

    ½ teaspoon salt

    3 eggs, beaten

    Preparation:

    Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

    Grease 4 (4 ounce) oven-safe ramekins with butter or Crisco. Line the bottoms of each ramekin with a small circle of parchment paper, grease paper and dust with flour. Place ramekins onto a rimmed cookie sheet and set aside. Melt butter, chocolate, and espresso powder in a double boiler over almost simmering water. When almost melted, blend carefully and turn off heat. Whisk sugar, corn starch, and salt in a small bowl. Carefully beat in eggs. Mix a small amount of the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture gradually. Then mix in the remaining chocolate mixture. Divide the batter evenly between the ramekins. Bake for 8 ½ minutes or until the middle look shiny but are dry to the touch. Let stand 20 - 30 seconds before unmolding. To unmold, use an oven mitt, invert each mold onto a baking dish. The cakes will drop out.

    Makes 4 cakes

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    White Chocolate Covered Strawberries with Coconut

    Ingredients:

    11 oz. white chocolate chips or a white chocolate bar, chopped finely

    1 quart fresh strawberries with the stems on, washed

    1 cup shredded flaked coconut

    Preparation:

    Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper. Place the white chocolate chips in a chocolate melter or a microwave-safe container. If using a chocolate melter, heat on high until the chocolate is melted. If using the microwave, heat on 50% power for 1 minute. Stir, then continue heating in 30-second increments on 50% power, stirring until the white chocolate is completely melted. Dry the strawberries with paper towels (this helps the chocolate adhere better to the strawberries). Spread the coconut out on a plate in an even layer. Dip the strawberries in the melted chocolate, letting the excess drip off (you can use a spoon to help catch the dripping chocolate), then immediately press into the coconut, turning to coat both sides. Place the white chocolate-covered strawberries onto the prepared cookie sheets to cool. When finished dipping all of the strawberries, transfer to the refrigerator to cool and harden until ready to serve.

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    Gooey Chocolate Melting Hearts

    Ingredients:

    1/2 cup all purpose flour

    4.5 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped

    1 heaping tbsp. cocoa powder

    6 tbsp. powdered sugar

    1/2 cup and a bit more unsalted butter

    4 large eggs or 3 eggs and 2 tbsp. yogurt

    1/2 tsp. baking powder

    A pinch of salt

    4 tbsp. chocolate or white chocolate chips  (optional but recommended)

    Butter to grease

    Directions:Sieve together cocoa powder, flour, salt and the baking powder. Do it about twice so that the three are blended well.

    Preheat oven to 350.

    Place the chopped chocolate and butter in a double-boiler, bring the water to boil. Once the water boils, lower the heat, set the double-boiler on and stir the choc-butter mixture until it melts. Set aside. Beat the eggs lightly with the yogurt (if you are opting for 3 eggs + yogurt) and then add the powdered sugar. Mix well until well incorporated. Next, add the cooled chocolate-butter mixture and stir well to incorporate. Again, no need to beat, just mix in well. Gently fold the flour mixture into the choc-butter mixture and mix in just enough to remove to any lumps and until you get a smooth batter. Grease your heart-shaped molds with butter. Add the batter 3/4 of the way and top off with some chocolate chips. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 8-10 minutes. I found that for the first batch, I had to bake them for close to 10 mins before they were done. For ones after that, 8 mins was just right.

    The hearts will be a bit flaky outside and soft inside. Cool well before serving. Refrigerating is another good option!

    Just warm up in microwave slightly before eating.

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      May Valentine’s Day be special to YOU!

      And oh…

      here’s my ecard just for you!

      Happy

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      Thank you and have a great chocolate day!

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