Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

     Valentine's Day for most people seems to be one of those holidays that you either hate or love, and that seems to change dependent on our relationship status.  Valentine's day for me has always been one of the busiest days of the year for me.  Having been an event planner, a floral designer, and a personal chef, lets just say that the holiday keeps me busy.

     While I do agree that we should definitely make sure that all of our loved ones know how important they are to us everyday, not just Valentine's Day, I say why not enjoy some festivities today!  What are everyone's plans for Valentine's Day?  I remember as a kid how I would have such a hard time knowing what Valentines to send out to my classmates.  They had to be just right, but I never knew what to write on the Valentines, as I got older it got even harder since words can be interpreted in so many ways.  I wonder how the great poets ever decided what to write.  One of my favorite poets, wrote the following,


Sonnet 43 - How do I love thee? Let me count the ways 
Elizabeth Barrett Browning


How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday's
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints,—I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life!—and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

So what do I write on my Valentine's now?   Usually I write a note that I have truly thought long and hard about and, send it along with treats.  Sometimes treats speak more effectively than words.  This year I am sending red velvet cupcakes, cause lets be honest, what is better than red velvet cupcakes?
 
Love From Scratch Red Velvet Cupcakes

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 1/2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup red food coloring
1 cup buttermilk (no substitutions please)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Cream butter and sugar until fluffy, add eggs and blend well.

Add cocoa and food coloring and add to the butter mixture.

Sift flour and salt together into this mixture.

One at a time, add the following ingredients: buttermilk, vanilla, and water.

In a small bowl, combine the vinegar and baking soda. Fold it into the cake batter gently, don't beat it in.  Pour the batter into the cupcake tins. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.

I hope that you and yours have a great Valentine's Day!

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