February 04, 2000


Gifts for the "Sweet" heart

A foolproof way to win hearts this Valentine's Day

This Valentine's Day, what better way to show someone special just how much you care than with homemade, indulgent treats. Treats so decadent and delicious your valentine's heart is sure to melt.

Whether it's that someone special, family, friends or coworkers, a homemade treat will warm their hearts and put a smile on their faces.

And because these treats are so easy, even children can create them. The Magic Cookie Bars, Marbled Cheesecake Hearts and Foolproof Fudge are perfect for sharing with classmates. This year your child will be "the cupid of the class" with any of these delicious goodies in hand.

Tips

Valentine Gift Wrapping

Show off your gift from the heart with fun valentine gift wrap. Take any small box or container and wrap with decorative paper. Use baskets or bowls lined with colorful napkins. Stack your treats on a plate or tray, overwrap with colorful plastic wrap and tie on a beautiful bow. Let children help deco-rate with stickers, crayons and markers.

Easy Heart Shapes

Create heart-shaped desserts by using a heart-shaped cookie cutter, or simply cut around a waxed-paper heart shape with a knife.

Decorating With Chocolate

Add that extra special touch to your Valentine's Day recipe with easy chocolate decorating. (Use a 4-ounce Semi-Sweet, Classic White or Bittersweet baking bar with these decorating ideas.)

Chocolate Curls - let the baking bar stand in a warm place (80-85 degrees) until thoroughly warm but not melted. Using a vegetable peeler, make curls by drawing the peeler along the thin, flat side of the bar. Remove the curls with a toothpick and place them on the dessert or store them on a plate in the refrigerator until needed.

Chocolate Shavings - to make shavings, let the baking bar stand in a warm place until thoroughly warm but not melted. Using a vegetable peeler, make short strokes for a shaved effect. For a more splintered effect, use cool rather than warm chocolate.

For additional delicious recipes and tips, visit:
www.ghirardelli.com
www.eaglebrand.com

 

Chocolate Cheesecake

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Makes 12 servings
3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup Ghirardelli Unsweetened Cocoa
3 tablespoons flour
3 egg whites
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
1 egg
1/4 cup Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips, melted
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 300ºF. Spray bottom of 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray. Combine crumbs and sugar; sprinkle evenly on bottom of pan.

2. In mixer bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy. Mix in cocoa and flour. Add remaining ingredients; mix well.

3. Pour into prepared pan. Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until center is set. Cool; chill. Garnish as desired. Refrigerate leftovers.

 

Foolproof Fudge

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Makes about 2 pounds

3 cups (18 ounces) Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
Dash of salt
1/2 to 1 cup chopped nuts, optional
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Line 8- or 9-inch square pan with foil. Butter foil; set aside.

2. In heavy saucepan, melt chips with sweetened condensed milk and salt. Remove from heat. Stir in nuts if desired and the vanilla. Spread evenly into prepared pan.

3. Chill 2 hours or until firm. Turn fudge onto cutting board; peel off foil and cut into squares. Store covered in refrigerator.

Variation

Marshmallow Fudge: Omit nuts. Stir 2 tablespoons butter in with vanilla. Fold in 2 cups miniature marshmallows. Proceed as above.

 

Decadent Chocolate Truffles

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Makes about 6 dozen

3 cups (18 ounces) Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Optional Coatings: Finely chopped toasted nuts, flaked coconut, chocolate sprinkles, colored sprinkles, unsweetened cocoa powder, confectioners' sugar or colored sugars

1. In large saucepan, melt chips with sweetened condensed milk. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Pour into medium-size bowl. Cover and chill 2 to 3 hours or until firm.

2. Shape into 1-inch balls; roll in desired coating. Store tightly covered in refrigerator.

 

Chilled Mocha Latte

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Makes 4 servings

2 tablespoons Ghirardelli Unsweetened Cocoa
1 tablespoon instant espresso coffee
1/2 cup warm water
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups ice cubes
Whipped cream for garnish, optional

1. In small bowl, dissolve cocoa and coffee in water.

2. In blender container, combine cocoa mixture, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla; blend well.

3. Gradually add ice, blending until smooth. Serve immediately. Refrigerate leftovers.

 

Magic Cookie Bars

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Makes 24 to 36 bars

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
2 cups (12 ounces) Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1 cup chopped nuts

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF (325ºF for glass dish). In 13x9-inch baking pan, melt butter in oven.

2. Sprinkle crumbs over butter; pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over crumbs. Top with remaining ingredients; press down firmly with fork.

3. Bake 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool. Chill if desired. Cut into bars. Store covered at room temperature.

 

Marbled Cheesecake Hearts

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Makes about 12 (3-inch) hearts

2 cups finely crushed créme-filled chocolate sandwich cookies (about 24 cookies)
3 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 (1/2-ounce) sections Ghirardelli Unsweetened Chocolate, melted

1. Preheat oven to 300ºF. Line a 13x9-inch baking pan with heavy foil; set aside.

2. Combine crumbs and butter; press firmly on bottom of foil-lined pan.

3. With mixer, beat cream cheese in large bowl until fluffy. Gradually beat in sweetened condensed milk until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla; mix well. Pour half the batter evenly over prepared crust.

4. Stir melted chocolate into remaining batter; spoon over vanilla batter. With table knife or metal spatula, gently swirl chocolate batter through vanilla batter to marble.

5. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until set. Cool. Chill at least 1 hour. Use foil to lift out of pan. For hearts, cut with heart-shaped cookie cutter, or with knife, cut around waxed paper heart shape. Or cut into bars. Store leftovers covered in refrigerator.

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