There was a diner that we would occasionally visit when I was a little girl. It was otherworldly. The fluorescent lights were bright and the restaurant was loud with the clanking of pots and pans, music on the jukebox and the chatter of the customers. I remember the waitresses with bouffants bustling about in their pink uniforms, the red, shiny vinyl booths and Formica tabletops, and the weathered men with worn baseball caps hunched over their coffee cups at the counter. What I remember the most, however, was the gleaming pie display case. It was vividly illuminated from the inside and the desserts were featured on constantly rotating, pristine white shelves, giving a 360 degree view of the tantalizing contents. This polished stainless-steel refrigerator was an absolute shrine to pie. It was truly memorable. Read more
Tag: Valentine’s Day
When I was in my mid-20s, some girlfriends and I started a Valentine’s Day tradition. Being that we were all single at the time, we chose to spend the evening of February 14 together instead of pining over ex-boyfriends and lost loves.
My friend Cindy would be on cocktail duty. Ingrid was in charge of selecting the movie. Una always brought the appetizers. And I took care of making our chosen dinner — fondue.
We’d start with a pot of cheese fondue with bread, steamed broccoli and grilled chicken for dipping. Once we’d had our fill of the savory course, I’d bring out a small pot of chocolate fondue with strawberries, orange segments, pound cake cubes and pretzel sticks. It was such a fun way to celebrate our loving friendships on a day most often reserved for romance.
A perfect rich-yet-airy chocolate souffle is the ultimate wow-factor Valentine’s Day dessert. But souffles can be intimidating, both for expert bakers and novice cooks. So we asked Pastry Chef Robert Parks, lead instructor of the Oregon Culinary Institute in Portland, for his no-fail, no-fall recipe, plus five top tips for souffle success.
1. Make a “cream-based” souffle: This is the key to Chef Parks’ no-fail recipe. Cream-based souffles include starch, which makes the souffle more stable and less sensitive to movement.
2. Use the right type of ramekin: deep and straight-sided.
3. Don’t overwhip or underwhip the meringue: It should be stiff but not crumbly or dry.
By Allison Robicelli
I was nostalgic for the “great American mom-and-pop-shop pursuit-of-happiness” business model even before I met my husband, Matt Robicelli, a chef. Before we fell in love we knew we’d open a business together. For six years now Robicelli’s Bakery in Brooklyn has turned out millions of brownies, cookies, whoopie pies and what many people flatteringly call the city’s best cupcakes. It’s spawned a cookbook and some notoriety. And yet we are still married, with our ninth Valentine’s Day upon us. Being married to your spouse isn’t all cupid and cupcakes, though. Here are a few lessons I’ve learned so far: Read more
It’s February 13. Whether you’re a boyfriend or girlfriend, husband or wife — or even a good friend — you have just enough time to plan something special for Valentine’s Day. No, we’re not suggesting a last-minute swing by the convenience store for one of those cardboard, heart-shaped chocolate boxes moments before the big date. Instead, show your love by baking up decadent chocolate desserts in your own kitchen. These heart warmingly homemade chocolate-centric recipes come to you just in the nick of time, working as a romantic treat for two or an irresistible dessert for a troupe of sweet-toothed singles.
A fudgy brownie is a no-brainer, but Ina Garten’s Brownie Tart (pictured above) cuts down on flour so that it’s extra rich and chocolatey. She deepens the flavor of chocolate by adding coffee granules, making the whole house smell like brownies.
Love and chocolate. That’s what Valentine’s Day is all about. Go beyond the boring box of store-bought chocolates and wow your valentine with spicy homemade truffles decorated with sprinkles, candies, sparkling disco dust and glimmering edible jewels.
My go-to recipe for Spicy Brazilian Chocolate Truffles is extremely easy. The secret is constantly stirring the chocolate over low heat until it becomes very thick. Make a batch for your sweetie and check out step-by-step instructions below for decorating each of the truffles in my assortment.
When it comes to red velvet, think beyond cakes and cupcakes. After all, you can now find red velvet ice cream and even red velvet tea in the grocery store. Inspired by this beloved flavor, the chefs in our Food Network Kitchen came up with five all-new red velvet recipes that are perfect for Valentine’s Day — or any day, really.
Call me crazy, but chocolate isn’t my first choice for dessert. If you follow my blog, then you know there are some exceptions to this rule, at least when Chewy, Bittersweet Brownies are involved. Brownies aside, my sweet tooth tendencies are likely satisfied with something like this Raspberry-Ricotta Mousse or Lemon Icebox Bars. Why should Valentine’s Day be any different? This year I say think outside the box of chocolates and whip up one of these homemade treats for your sweetheart.
Tiramisu is Italian for “pick-me-up.” It’s made with ladyfingers dipped in espresso that are then layered with a whipped mascarpone mixture and topped with chocolate shavings. Giada’s version will make enough for you, your sweetie and then some.
Valentine’s Day isn’t Valentine’s Day without chocolate, right? This year, don’t just send your sweetie something sweet, but pair it with a little card that extends the sweetness too (like the one above from Little Sloth). Here are our favorite chocolate-filled cards to get your hands on for February 14.