Sugar Cookies and Peanut Butter Chocolate Hearts
The sugar edition! It’s that time of year when hearts and flowers would filling the shops (if they were open…..) So here are a couple of ideas to make your own valentines gifts this year.
3 cups plain flour + 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup caster sugar
1 cup + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter or vegan alternative (eg stork)
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
Preheat oven to 200c
- Beat the butter, vanilla and egg together.
- Mix the sugar, flour and baking powder together, then stir into the wet mixture. Combine well until you have a ball of dough. This makes a BIG ball of dough! If you don’t want to make a huge batch of cookies, cut in half and freeze half the dough (wrapped up well) ready for the next batch.
- Wrap the dough in cling film or a beeswax wrap and place in the fridge for 2 hours. Remove and leave to cool until room temperature. If the dough is too crumbly add a little more butter, if it’s too sticky add a little more flour.
- Roll the dough out on a sheet of baking paper to around ¼ inch thick. Cut into shapes. Place the baking paper onto a baking tray and cook in your pre heated oven for around 12 minutes. (All ovens vary - they should still be pale but the edges very slightly turning golden. Don’t worry if they seem soft, they will harden as they cool).
Once cool you can decorate them. Mix some plain icing sugar with enough water to make a thick, spreadable paste.
I used golden icing sugar here, which was a fail as it’s the same colour as the cookies and doesn’t show up! Feel free to add food colouring to the icing, or you could melt some chocolate and use that. I used freeze dried strawberry pieces for the decoration, you could use sprinkles etc
PEANUT BUTTER CHOCOLATE HEARTS
I made these for an event last year and so many people asked for the recipe. I was honestly a bit embarrassed as they are SO easy no one could believe it when I told them!
I used a heart shaped chocolate mould here (from Amazon) but you can use any silicone ice tray.
Alternatively place a sheet of baking paper on a baking tray and spread the melted mixture onto the paper in disc shapes (or heart shapes if you’re more artistic than I am!) then add the decorations and pop into the fridge to set.
You will need 100g dark chocolate (or milk chocolate if you prefer)
50g firm peanut butter
Decorations (sprinkles, dessicated coconut etc - I used edible dried flowers here)
- Place the chocolate in a heat proof bowl and heat over a saucepan of simmering water.
- One the chocolate is melted, mix in the peanut butter.
- If you’re using a mould, sprinkle a few decorations into the mould and pour the chocolate mix on top. (For alternative method, see above
- Place in the fridge to set for at least 2 hours.
That’s it for this month. See you in March, when hopefully brighter days are ahead for us all.
By Ella Easton