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Heart cookies

Valentine’s Day is a great excuse to indulge in sweets. Here are a few traditional items with an unusual twist.

RED VELVET DOUGHNUTS

From simpleseasonal.com

nonstick spray

2 cups flour

½ cup red cocoa powder

1 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

½ cup unsalted butter

2 cups sugar

2 eggs

2 tsp. vanilla

1 cup buttermilk

2-3 drops red food coloring, optional

Preheat to 325, spray donut pan with nonstick spray and wipe off excess.

Mix flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt in small bowl.

Beat butter and sugar on medium high until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes).

Add eggs, mixing for 30 seconds in between each addition.

Add vanilla. Turn off mixer and scrape down sides. Mix on high for 1520 seconds.

Turn mixer to low.

Add 1⁄3 of flour mixture. Add 1⁄2 buttermilk. Repeat, ending with flour. Add red food coloring if desired.

Transfer doughnut batter to pastry bag fitted with a round piping tip. Pipe batter into pan, leaving a 1⁄4” of room.

Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until they spring back when gently touched. Let rest for 5-7 min, remove from pan.

Ice and decorate as desired.

HEART COOKIES

From sugarspunrun.com

1 cup unsalted butter, softened

3⁄4 cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1 large egg yolk

2 1⁄4 cups all-purpose flour

Marble Icing Glaze

3 cups powdered sugar, sifted

3 Tablespoons light corn syrup

3-4 Tablespoons milk

1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1⁄4 teaspoon almond extract

gel food coloring

Preheat oven to 350F.

In KitchenAid mixer or with electric handmixer beat your butter until well-creamed.

Add sugar to the mixing bowl and beat with the butter until well combined (about 30 seconds).

Stir in vanilla extract and salt, stirring until well-combined, and scrape down the sides of the bowl using a rubber spatula to ensure ingredients are well-incorporated.

Add egg yolk and beat until combined With mixer on medium- low speed, gradually add flour until well-incorporated (you will definitely need to scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl several times for this, as the mixture is fairly dry and crumbs tend to settle at the bottom of the bowl).

Transfer dough to clean surface and use your hands to form it into a cohesive ball.

Flatten into a disk (about 1' thick), cover with clear wrap, and chill for 15 minutes.

Once dough has chilled, transfer it to a clean, lightly floured surface and use a lightly floured rolling pin to roll out to about 1⁄4' thickness.

Lightly flour your cookie cutters and cut out your shapes, transferring them to ungreased cookie sheet.

Once you have cut out all of the shapes that you can, be sure to recombine the scraps and roll out and cut out again to get the maximum number of cookies from your dough.

Bake on 350F for 10-12 minutes (longer if you are using larger cookie cutter and allow cookies to cool completely before dipping in chocolate.

Marble Icing Glaze

In a large bowl, combine sifted powdered sugar, 3 Tbsp milk, and light corn syrup. Whisk until smooth. If mixture is too dry, add additional milk, one teaspoon at a time until mixture can be stirred.

Stir in extracts.

Glaze should be thick, to test that it is the right consistency drop a few droplets on top of a test cookie. If the glaze remains stiff, it needs to be thinned. If it runs off the cookie, it is too thin and needs more powdered sugar. If it settles down smoothly, it is just right.

Divide glaze into four small bowls.

Working with one bowl at a time, use a toothpick (a different toothpick for each color) and dip it into the food coloring bottle and then into the glaze. You want a small pool of food coloring about the size of a mini chocolate chip or two.

Drag a toothpick through the food coloring and glaze until it is prettily swirled/marbled.

Holding your cookie at the base, dip the surface of each cookie into the glaze (take a look at your first cookie — are you satisfied with the pattern? Adjust whorls with additional food coloring as needed).

Once the first bowl runs out or the colors become too muddled together from dipping, move onto your next bowl of food coloring (you will probably need to stir as the surface may have begun to harden).

Repeat steps 5-7 until all cookies have been dipped. Allow them to harden at least 30 minutes (may take longer) for glaze to set. Enjoy!

Keep uneaten cookies in an airtight container at room temperature.

BAILEY’S OREO TART

Mykitchenlove.com

Oreo Crust:

2 cups crushed Oreos or Oreo crumbs

6 tbsp unsalted butter

Baileys Filling:

475 grams mascarpone cheese

1⁄4 cup granulated sugar

3-5 tbsp Baileys (or other Irish Creme Liquor)

Ganache Drizzle:

1⁄2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1-2 tbsp whipping cream OR Baileys

Oreo Crust:

Preheat oven to 350° F.

Melt butter in microwave in short bursts (30 seconds to start, then in 20 second intervals until melted). Mix with crushed Oreos and press firmly into a fluted tart pan (I use a rectangular 4.5' (11.5 cm) x 13' (34 cm) x 1' (3 cm) fluted tart pan). Bake for 5-10 minutes. Remove from oven and let fully cool in pan. Chill in fridge until cold.

Baileys Filling:

Whip mascarpone and sugar with an electric mixer for 2-3 minutes until stiff peaks form. Add Baileys and whip until just blended. Fill Oreo crust with filling. Return to fridge and chill.

Ganache Drizzle: Place chocolate chips and Baileys (or whipping cream) in a small bowl and heat in short bursts until melted (start with 30 seconds and then 20 second intervals until mostly melted. Some small lumps will melt upon stirring). Stir together and allow to cool for 3-4 minutes. Stir again and drizzle over chilled tart. Return to fridge and chill for 20-30 minutes more before serving

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