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Laurie Wolf's Recipes: Valentine's Day Treats

OPB | Feb. 11, 2014 midnight | Updated: March 26, 2014 1:22 p.m.

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Would you like to make your Valentine a special dessert? From the decadence of stuffed figs to the just plain fun of marshmallow skewers, I’ve got you covered with simple and delicious recipes for Valentine’s Day treats that will please just about any sweet tooth. Happy February 14th!

Chocolate Heart

Bruce Wolf

Instead of spending a small fortune on chocolates for your honey, make this fun, giant heart at home. You can use whatever chocolate you like — for health reasons the darker the better — and do your own thing in terms of decorating. Make sure you allow the chocolate to set for at least 30 minutes before wrapping. Though this recipe calls for sprinkles, there are lots of other toppings that would be quite wonderful, including roasted almonds and toasted coconut. You could also drizzle it with caramel and sprinkle with sea salt. I am not going to suggest any bacon!

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 2 cups chocolate chips, semi or bittersweet
  • 1/3 cup granola
  • ½ cup white chocolate chips
  • Colored sprinkles

Directions

  1. Using a sharpie, draw a heart on a piece of parchment. Or you can draw lots of little hearts — it’s up to you. Turn the paper over; you will still be able to see the shape.
  2. Place the chocolate and coconut oil in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 1 minute on medium power. Check and stir to mix. If the chocolate is not melted, microwave for 20-second intervals until it is 90 percent melted. The chocolate will continue melting on its own.
  3. Using a spatula or spoon, place the chocolate in the outline of the heart. Spread to keep it in the lines, though it certainly does not need to be perfect. It is homemade, after all.
  4. Sprinkle the heart with the granola and allow to set for 20 minutes. Make sure the chocolate is no longer tacky.
  5. Melt the white chocolate the same way, although the first interval in the microwave should be just 30 seconds. Drizzle the heart with the white chocolate and immediately add the colored sprinkles. The sprinkles should only stick to the white chocolate. Once again allow to set until firm.

Marshmallow Skewers 

Bruce Wolf

  

When my kids were little, I always made them a Valentine’s Day surprise. They loved this one in particular, so here it is!

Ingredients (Makes 12 marshmallows)

  • 12 marshmallows
  • 2/3 cup white chocolate wafers, good quality
  • Assorted colored candy decorations

Directions:

  1. Place two marshmallows on little skewers, chopsticks or toothpicks. Set aside.
  2. Melt the white chocolate in the microwave, starting at medium power for 30 seconds. Stir to distribute heat. If not melted, continue in the microwave at 20-second intervals.
  3. Dip the marshmallows in the melted white chocolate and sprinkle with the assorted candies. Allow to set for at least 30 minutes.

Stuffed Figs

Bruce Wolf

Figs are sexy. And they are delicious. In this recipe, I stuff plump, dry figs with a walnut, apricot and raisin mixture and dip in melted chocolate. Adults only, please: You can add a teaspoon of brandy or some interesting flavor liqueur to the filling.

Ingredients (Serves 4) 

  • 8 dried figs, large
  • 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons chopped dried apricots
  • 2 tablespoons golden raisins
  • 1 tablespoon apricot or raspberry preserves
  • Pinch cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup dark chocolate

Directions

  1. With a sharp knife make a slit in the side of each fig. Spread the fig open and press the insides to make as large a cavity as possible.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the walnuts, apricots, raisins, preserves and cinnamon. Gently stuff the figs with the dried fruit mixture. Press the slit in the figs back together and place them on parchment paper.
  3. In a small microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate on medium power at 30-second intervals. It will probably take a minute. Stir until smooth. Using a small spoon drizzle each fig with the melted chocolate, or dip a portion of the stuffed figs into the melted chocolate. You can dip while holding the stem. Place the figs on the wax paper and allow the chocolate to set.

Raspberry and Strawberry Mousse

Bruce Wolf

This is a remarkably delightful mousse, with creamy Greek yogurt and fresh or frozen berries. It can be made the day before; just add the garnish before serving. No heavy cream, not in this baby.

Ingredients (Serves 2-4)

  • 1 ½ cups vanilla Greek yogurt, strained in cheesecloth
  • 2-3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup strawberries and raspberries
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Chopped strawberries for garnish

Directions

  1. Place the thickened yogurt in a medium bowl. Stir in the honey.
  2. In a blender or food processor combine the fruit, lemon juice and vanilla.
  3. Using a spatula fold the berries into the yogurt. Stir but leave swirls of color; don’t overmix.
  4. Spoon the mixture into 2-4 glasses. Garnish with the chopped berries and keep chilled till serving time.

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