How can you be opposed to a day that is singularly dedicated to romantic love? And since I’ve had kids, I’ve expanded the notion to include parental love. My front door is festooned with a heart shaped wreath made from magenta heather. I have a stockpile of doilies and pink paper for the requisite Valentine’s Cards. I’ve been tinkering with heart-shaped eggs so I’m ready for breakfast the morning of. And I dreamed up this pretty little treat — a chocolate Valentine — just for the occasion.
Valentine’s Day? I’m all in.
Even if you aren’t all in, these three-ingredient chocolate hearts are worth your attention. No cookie cutters required, just crispy cereal, coconut, chocolate and a willingness to get messy with melted goodness.
Start by chopping up bittersweet chocolate into small pieces. Opt for decent chocolate here; it doesn’t need to be Valrhona, but not Baker’s Chocolate either.
Melt the chocolate down into dreamy lusciousness. Try not to lick every last drop.
Add the cereal and coconut and give it a stir. If you aren’t one for coconut, just add more cereal or your favorite finely chopped nuts.
Scoop the chocolate by the tablespoon onto a baking sheet and use your fingertips to flatten the mixture and spread it into the shape of a heart. If you’re doing this with a child, be very forgiving in your notion of what a heart looks like. It will still taste delicious even if it looks like a monster or the moon.
Sprinkle coconut over the top.
Let it to cool enough that it snaps when you break it in half.
Most importantly, share it with your beloveds…the romantic variety or the child variety. Both qualify.
Or if you are a real Valentine’s Day grinch, keep them all to yourself. I’ll understand.
Happy Valentine’s Day.
P.S. You can find other Valentine’s Day inspiration here:
CRISPY CHOCOLATE COCONUT HEARTS
Feel free to substitute finely chopped toasted nuts of any variety if you don’t care for coconut. Alternatively, skip the nuts altogether and just make this a two-ingredient treat, upping the amount of crispy brown rice cereal to 1 1/3 cups and leaving the tops unadorned.
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
1 cup crisp brown rice cereal
1/3 cup unsweetened finely grated coconut, plus more to sprinkle on top
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a Silpat.
Chop the chocolate into small pieces that are roughly even in size. Put them into a medium, microwave-save bowl. Microwave the chocolate on high in 30-second bursts, mixing after each round, until the chocolate is melted and smooth. This took 2 1/2 minutes in my microwave. Alternatively, melt the chocolate in a medium pot set over another pot of simmering water, stirring until melted.
Add the crisp brown rice cereal and coconut to the chocolate and mix gently until combined.
Spoon 1 level tablespoon of the chocolate mixture onto the baking sheet. Use your fingers (and perhaps the aid of the tip of a knife) to spread the chocolate into the shape of a heart. If you aren’t in the mood to get fussy, you can just spread it into any organic shape that suits you. Continue with the remainder of the chocolate, leaving an inch or so of space between. Sprinkle a pinch of coconut over each heart, covering the entire surface of the chocolate.
Leave the chocolate to cool and firm up until they are hard and snap when broken in half, about an hour. You can speed up the process by putting them in the fridge or freezer.
Store in an air-tight container. Will keep well for at least a week.
Makes 18 hearts.