When I was around 12 or 13 the father of my friend Jodi took both of us to visit his Aunt Cavelle, my friend's great-aunt. Jodi talked-up Aunt Cavelle quite high and told me there would be doughnuts for us when we got there. At that point in time, I could never remember having a homemade doughnut before. I was just happy to be invited somewhere that the idea of doughnuts would simply be a bonus, if they were to appear.
When we arrived there weren't any stale doughnuts in a box to be seen. Instead, Aunt Cavelle said her hello's then went into the kitchen to fry up the doughnuts right there! We could here the sizzling of hot oil as yeasted dough was dropped into the pot and before you knew it, Aunt Cavelle re-appeared with a plateful of cinnamon and sugar coated doughnuts and oh-my-gawd they were still hot! They exterior of the pastry was slightly crispy and the sugar mixture coated our lips as it gave away to a soft and pillowy interior.
I can't tell you how many I ate that day but it wouldn't surprise me if it had been 3 since that is how many I ate yesterday when I fried up these Valentine-worthy versions. How sweet it is.
Cinnamon-Sugar Heart-shaped Doughnuts - Recipe
Cinnamon Hearts are little red, heart-shaped, hard candies spiked with a hot and spicy cinnamon flavour. Typically they are only available around Valentine's Day but in this world where stores advertise for the next spending occasion before the current one has arrived you can find them for several months of the year.
I like to play around with Valentine treat ideas simply because all us single gals know February 14th is not just for couples. At least that's what I'm telling myself. We don't need a significant other to have a good time! With a little sugar cookie dough, a simple ice cream base, Alton Brown's doughnut recipe, and a bag of cinnamon hearts, Cupid can take the day off.
Grind Cinnamon Hearts to Make a Powder
Instead of using a bottle of food-dye and extracts to flavour and colour your Valentine treats, grind cinnamon hearts to make a powder. With a coffee grinder (wiped clean before and after each use!), cinnamon hearts can be easily pulverized into a pink powder. Use the powder like you would icing sugar to infuse frostings, fondants, ice creams, or dust pastries with that unforgettable spicy cinnamon aroma and colour.
I've been asked again to provide the sweet endings to a meal taking place next month celebrating multiculturalism. It's a fantastic opportunity in my eyes as the international options available are both astounding and mouthwatering. Last year for the event I prepared Alfajores (Peru), Linzer Cookies (Austria), and Baklava (Turkey) which were well received. Besides those three desserts, the sky is the limit for this years selections.
The menu has yet to be finalized but today seemed like a good day to do a little recipe testing for one of the treats I have in mind. Seeming as Valentine's Day is tomorrow, a little chocolate seemed appropriate. I present to you: The Brigadeiro.
My love has not wavered since I first cast my eyes on you in the thrift store. Tall, dark, and handsome. Mysterious and alluding. You were well built and I couldn't ignore the feelings of need and passion that were evoked when I wrapped my arm around you and held you dear. How could somebody just throw you away?
Now that I have you I can't stop thinking about you. I dream about our future together and all the dinners we will share. Can we make this work? Is it worth the risk? Are things getting too hot? Is there too much pressure? So many questions and uncertainties. But I must confess and I think it's all too fitting that I share my true emotions on Valentine's Day.
Pressure cooker: I think I love you.
In an attempt to make as many in-house baked goods as possible, I can now cross graham cracker cookies off the list. With the sweetness of local honey and toastiness of whole wheat flour, these cookies are a necessity when assembling s'mores- the gooey, sweet treat usually enjoyed by the campfire on hot summer nights. Filled with a thick layer of squishy marshmallow (yes, homemade) and milk chocolate ganache, Valentine's Day just got a little bit more lovable. Keep reading to see how they are put together.
Eating. Drinking. Sharing.