February 8, 2009

Valentines 2009

So I was finally tagged by the 25 things fwd going around facebook. Normally, I ignore these requests and people eventually stop tagging me. This time, I decided to do it. Mostly out of boredom. One of my answers was I hate cooking for myself, but love cooking for others. This is especially true around the holidays. I love making different baked goods, wrapping it up all pretty, and sending them to my friends and family. This habit started in high school when I would bring my friends baguettes (made the right way) and birthday cakes. That habit has only gotten stronger through culinary school. I've learned so many different cooking techniques, so of course the quality of the products have risen.

Valentines day is on saturday, so it's time to start sending out treats to those who live more than a few miles away. This year, I decided to stick with shortbread cookies and brownies. A shortbread cookie recipe can be found here. Instead of covering them with fondant, I iced the cookies with royal icing.The first step to making these cookies is to take royal icing that is stiff enough to pipe with and let it dry for an hour.Second step is to use a thinner royal icing for flooding. This can be achieved by simply adding a few drops of water.After flooding, it's best to let it sit for several hours to set.

I let these sit for 2 hours, then decorated them by piping on colored royal icing and painting with gel colors.
I let these set overnight, then packaged them up.

The other treats I have included are heart-shaped brownies that are drizzled with hazelnut chocolate. Half of the brownie is definitely the perfect serving. It's dense,but soft and very...very chocolately.

Cocoa Brownies

10 Tbsp. butter, unsalted
1 1/4 c. granulated sugar
3/4 c. plus 2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 eggs
1/2 c. flour

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter baking pan of desired size and set aside. For thicker brownies, use a smaller pan.
  2. Place butter,sugar,cocoa powder,and salt in a medium microwaveable container.Place into microwave until butter melts. Throughly mix ingredients together.
  3. Add vanilla extract and eggs. Mix until combined.
  4. Add flour and mix until you cannot see it anymore. Do not overmix.
  5. To the prepared pan, add the batter.
  6. Place in the oven for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out slightly moist.
  7. Let it cool completely on a rack and cut into desired shape and size.


Maggie said...

I love the way the cookies look, especially the stitching detail. I have to give the brownie recipe a try, it's the first I've sen that uses cocoa instead of solid chocolate.

Angie's Recipes said...

wow! they look so beautiful. The icing spreads really smooth. Did you make it yourself?

V.Streit said...

Angie: Thank you.:) Yes, I made every component that went into the cookies. I love royal icing. I love how smooth and clean it looks on a cookie.

~~louise~~ said...

Discovered you blog via Noshtalgia.

Those cookies look yummy. Your blog is quite lovely too.

Thanks for sharing...

V.Streit said...

Louise: Thank you for stopping by. :) Your comment means alot to me.


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