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Bake a Heart-Shaped Dessert

Bake a Heart-Shaped Dessert

Surprise your Valentine with a sweet heart-shaped dessert. A delicious way to say "I love you!"

By FamilyTime

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Hearts, hearts everywhere! With Valentine's Day just around the corner, the shops are filled with heart-shaped cards, candies, and other treats. They also offer heart-shaped pans and molds.

What fun it is to bake something shaped like a heart! Your kids will love it, and you'll feel gratified when you put the holiday dessert on the table.

Pans and Molds
Heart-shaped pans vary in size if not shape. A popular one for cakes is about 11 by 12 inches wide with a removable bottom. You can also buy heart-shaped rings that sit on baking sheets. These tend to be less expensive than the pans.

Silicone heart-shaped molds are becoming popular. If you haven't tried this marvelous pliable product for baking you'll be surprised how satisfactory it is. The baked good pops out of the non-stick pan, which washes easily and then "squishes" for easy storage.

You can buy heart-shaped cookie cutters, muffin molds, and ramekins - all suitable for individual treats. Heart-shaped pancake rings make it easy to turn Valentine's Day breakfast into a special feast.

What to Bake
While a heart-shaped chocolate cake is a Valentine's Day classic, think beyond it for some other ideas. But if you want to make a rich, seductive chocolate cake, bake our Triple Chocolate Cake in a heart-shaped 11- or 12-inch cake pan that's about 1 ½ inches deep.

Using storebought cookie dough, you can make oversized cookies and decorate them to your heart's content. Press the dough into a mold, or flatten it and then use a small, sharp knife to cut out a heart.

Follow the same procedure for pastry crust. Make or buy your favorite unbaked crust, roll it into a large circle, and then press it into a heart-shaped tart pan or cut it into a heart shape. Use a cardboard form or trust your eye to make a heart.

Bake a pan of brownies -- what could be easier? -- and use a big heart-shape cookie cutter to cut them into lush chocolate hearts.

How to Decorate
Valentine's Day hearts beget more hearts! Top your heart-shaped cookies with tiny pink and red heart-shaped candies. Cut out heart-shaped pieces of parchment or wax paper and use them as stencils.

Use red, white, and pink decorating frosting to make squiggly hearts, decorative ripples, or other shapes on cakes and cookies.

Raspberries, strawberries, and cherries are wonderful fruits for Valentine's Day. Their color is right, their size is workable, and because they are hard to find in mid winter, they are a luxury.

Wrap cakes and cupcakes with pink and white ribbon; bake cupcakes in decorative paper or foil cups. Wrap desserts in colored plastic wrap for gift giving. Pack cookies and homemade candies in festive tins.

The goal is to make this small holiday sweetly special. Let your loved ones know you love them -- and celebrate Valentine's Day in heartfelt style!


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