Skip to main content

Love, Luxury & Limitless Indulgence

It's Valentine's Day, a day to celebrate your love for those around you. It's a day to bust out the wine you've been saving, splurge on those decadent truffles, or pull out the silky robe. It's a day to eat chocolates and big dinners, it's a day to order dessert, it's a day to imbibe more than you might normally.

Do you have plans? Will you endure the crowds at a popular local restaurant, or do you know of a private spot? Maybe you will travel with your loved one to a remote location and snuggle by the fire with a glass of rich port, brandy, or special beer. Perhaps you'll opt for a deliciously greasy pizza and play board games with a couple of bottles of wine. Do whatever strikes your fancy.

I work hard to show my love every day of the year, but February 14 is still a good excuse to celebrate and indulge. I hope you enjoy this faux-holiday!

This year I made a batch of these marzipan truffles. The full recipe is on New Scandenavian Cooking's website:

It's just a confectioner's sugar glaze (250g of sugar heated with ~3 tbsp of water) slowly blended with about 350g of blanched almonds. 

I made four different types:
  • Lavender | The intensely floral flavor was tempered by the sweet, rich marzipan.
  • Saffron | Just a few strands of saffron infuse the truffles with a lightly sweet and earthy flavor.
  • Cinnamon Cardamom | The spicy and savory blend matched the sweet marzipan for a great cold-weather treat.
  • Cocoa Chili | The bitter unsweetened cocoa and spicy chili melted into the marzipan making a decadent Valentine's Day sweet.
All four would pair nicely with a standard brandy and could even stand up to a peaty Islay Scotch. Lemon zest (alone or mixed with lavender), hibiscus, turmeric, and sea salt would be nice options too. 

Notes: I needed about 1/4 c more water than recommended (poured into the blender). I also didn't have plums to pull the seeds from (or bitter almonds). I didn't fry up the marzipan to bring out the flavor, but the blender got hot enough to bring out some of the flavors! It was a sticky and delicious mess. Once it hardened in the fridge, it was a delight to work with. Well worth the sticky hands.

Tip: Use a food processor instead of a blender for the power and easy of clean up. 


Popular posts from this blog

I Marched, What's Next?

What can we do? There has to be more than writing letters and posting on social media. This is a work in progress, but these are my thoughts...
Stay educated. If you think the media is misleading you, take charge. Know your sources. Do your research. You don't have to consume the 24-hour repetitive cycle of media. You can focus and keep it to the point. I like NPR, Popular Science, and the technical sources (department sites). If you're curious about education, go to the Dept of Education site! You want to know about the job rates? Go to the Department of Labor reports.

Educate each other. We are failing in this. We need to talk about the issues. Not just reposting articles, but face-to-face or virtually with a personal spin and follow up. We need to have meaningful discussions about the current state of affairs and what is happening. We can only act together if we work together. But serious discussion, not Facebook posts!

A Right Regal Bonsoir (or Imperial Bedroom Revisited)

Elvis Costello doesn't mess around. Last night, at The Chicago Theater, I witnessed a true delight of the senses. Out of respect for the artist's wishes, as requested, I didn't take any pictures or video of the performance. You'll have to live through my description and a grainy, preshow snap.

Wild Horticulture (Little Shop of Horrors)

Last night, I saw Little Shop of Horrors (Crown Point Community Theater edition). This fan-favorite has stood the test of time. People still pack in to see this 80s musical based on a 60s movie. Big production or small, the catchy tunes and dark yet quirky storyline keep people humming and laughing.

CPCT has a great range of shows. From Sartre's thought-provoking No Exit to the whimsical, yet mature, Happily Ever Once Upon they bring entertainment to the community. CPCT brings in plays that are far from mainstream. Evenso, it was a delight to see this classic musical.