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Valentine’s Day

Some people love it and some people hate it!  I am not a big fan of spending a ton of money on overpriced flowers and greeting cards but I am a fan of expressing a little love towards your family on Valentine’s day.  The easiest thing to do is make a homemade card.  Anyone can do it and it takes seconds.  If you want to go a little further, I like to make some kind of heart shaped treat. I have these heart shaped sugar cookies that I make once a year.  They take a little time to make, but you can enlist the kids to help and they are the best sugar cookies you will ever eat!  See recipe below.

Otherwise, I take whatever is on that menu for the day and turn it into a heart.  Sandwiches are easily turned into heart shapes with a cookie cutter, as is brownies, pancakes, toast, or whatever it is you are serving. I have even shaped meatballs and meatloaf into heart shapes and baked them.  The sky is the limit here, just think outside the box!

Valentine’s Day Cookies

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract*
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • cookie icing (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream butter and sugar together, in a large bowl.  Add egg and vanilla, beat well.  Mix all dry ingredients in a separate bowl until combined.  Slowly add dry ingredients to creamed mixture and beat until just combined.  With floured hands, divide dough in half and place on a floured board.  Roll out dough to about 1/8 of an inch thickness.  Using a large heart shaped cookie cutter, cut out cookies from dough and place on a large baking sheet coated with parchment paper.  Bake cookies for 7-8 minutes or until just slightly browned on the edges.

Re-roll scraps of dough and repeat.  Once the second round of cookies are cut out, use a smaller heart shaped cookie cutter to cut out the centers of the heart shaped cookies.  Place the outside heart shaped cookies(these will be the tops of the sandwiched cookies) on a baking sheet coated with parchment paper and bake for 5-7 minutes or until just slightly browned on the edges.  The small heart cut outs from the center of these cookies can be cooked as well.  However, put these all on the same baking sheet because their cooking times may vary from the larger cookies.

Repeat process until all the dough is gone.  You will need a large cookie and an outline cookie for each cookie sandwich.  The smaller hearts are just an added bonus!  Let the cookies cool completely on a wire rack.

* You can substitute 1 teaspoon of almond extract for 1 teaspoon of the vanilla extract if you have no nut allergies.

Cookie Icing

  • 1 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2-4 drops red liquid food coloring
  • 2-3 tablespoons of whole milk

Mix all ingredients in a bowl.  Once cookies are completely cooled, spread the icing on a large cookie and top it with a cookie that has the middle cut out of it.  Continue until all cookies are iced. Enjoy!

Another great recipe to try for Valentine’s Day is below!

Dark Velvet Pancakes with Maple Cream

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