Browsing Tag


Valentine's Day

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

February 8, 2011


I should be doing homework right now. Lots of it. I have a lot of assignments and mid terms to get through this week before Adam and I jet off to Mexico! I am definitely in need of a vacation right about now. But, I just had to make these chocolate dipped strawberries in honour of Valentine’s Day. I had made them last year, but like this year Adam and I won’t be home for Valentine’s Day so I wanted to make them in advance. Actually, last year he was in Mexico and I was here, and this year we will both be in Mexico for Valentine’s day, together! This is a great little treat that looks like it took a long time to create. You can package them up in three’s or four’s and hand them out to someone special. They look really cute in a little take along bag as well. There are also step-by-step photo’s on my other post from last year as well.



I decided to do a few variations this year, pistachio, almond and coconut. As well as the traditional chocolate drizzled ones. The almond ones I made were good, but they were a tad too big to go on the strawberries and while they were yummy, weren’t exactly camera friendly haha. There are lots of combination’s you could try. It doesn’t take long at all and can be made a day before hand, but it’s best if their eaten the same day as the bottoms begin to get soggy. This time I made them and then stuck each one on a cutting board lined with a silicone baking sheet in the fridge after I dipped them one by one. That way they keep cold while you make the next one.


These are super easy, and really lovely for valentine’s day. Perfect for someone with a sweet tooth, but also healthy too! (right.. I mean, there is fruit involved!) Alright, I better get back to studying! But please make these, they’re so easy and delicious. Or if you’re up for a challenge, try my honey chocolate cupcakes!


Happy Valentine’s Day!

Chocolate Covered Strawberries:

  • 1-2 pkg Strawberries
  • 1 cup Melting Chocolate (dark or milk)
  • 1/2 cup White Melting Chocolate
  • 1/2 cup medium shredded coconut (optional)
  • 1/4 cup crushed pistachios (optional)


  1. Place dark chocolate into a double broiler, and simmer on low. Allow the chocolate to melt completely and transfer to a glass bowl. Allow to cool slightly. ( I always place a glass mixing bowl over the pot, and then transfer the bowl to a hot plate). Alternatively, microwave on 20 second intervals until soft and melted.
  2. Do the same with the white chocolate. Then pour the white chocolate into a piping bag, and snip off a tiny bit. You can also reserve some white chocolate to dip the strawberries into as well.
  3. Wash the strawberries and dry them completely. You’ll want them slightly cool, to help cool the chocolate faster. Dip them one by one into the melted chocolate and place onto a tray, lined in parchment paper or saran wrap or silicone baking mat. Once you’ve finished all of them place the tray into the fridge to harden the chocolate. I placed them into the fridge one by one onto the tray so they would cool faster and harden while I made the others.
  4. You can if you like also dip them/roll them/or sprinkle them with coconut after you have dipped them into the chocolate.
  5. Once they have set, using the white chocolate piping bag, drizzle the white chocolate over the dark and place back into the fridge.
  6. Once they have set completely, you can package them up and give them to someone special!
Cupcakes, Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine’s Day, Honey!

February 4, 2011


There’s something new around here. Can you tell? I’ll give you a hint. I got a new camera! Well, Adam and I got a new camera together =) I have been longing for two things, 1. A new camera and 2. A new website layout. I’ve been pining for both for quite a while and now I can cross one off the list. If you’re a blogger, you know that a key ingredient in a food website is clear, crisp pictures. My old camera was fine for a while, but I could not help but want a sharper image to take better quality pictures. Adam and I had set out last weekend to browse cameras. We had gone to Best Buy and Future shop, and were not too happy with their service. First of all, both of them had only a handful of cameras that actually had battery packs on them, so you could turn them on. And all of the ones that did have batteries in them, had no memory card. Therefore, you could not see the picture quality of a picture once you took it. Both of these were the deciding factor that we needed to look elsewhere.

We went to London Drugs, as my mom works there (in the pharmacy) to look at their selection. They were much more helpful and knew a lot about all the cameras. We told them what we wanted it for, and they pointed us in the right direction. While I would love a Digital SLR my skills, and my wallet, aren’t quite at that level yet. But this camera is perfect for what I want. It’s a Panasonic Lumix ZS7. It’s a great point-and-shoot camera, with a really big lens and great quality. It’s only a step or two down from a Digital SLR. So far I really love it. We are also going to Mexico next weekend and I cannot wait to take some lovely pictures!


Alright, on to the cupcakes. I had signed up for Ever So Lovely’s Valentine’s Exchange and was so excited to make and send out some handmade Valentine’s around the world! I received my first card today from Jessica, a blogger in Australia! I had an idea in mind for Adam’s valentine’s day card and needed to make one for my honey too (of course.)


And then I started thinking about Valentine’s day baked goods. Since we’ll be on a warm sunny beach in Cabo, I wanted to blog about something before we left. Tonight happens to be our friends birthday and we’re going over for some drinks and games. I thought it would be a great night to avoid the huge list of homework bake some cupcakes to share with them as well. Adam and I have a joke about calling each other Honey, so I thought why not make honey cupcakes for Valentine’s day? I searched the net and found this chocolate cupcake recipe by Love & Olive Oil and slightly adapted it and created my own honey frosting. These are decadent, rich and so moist. The honey adds a subtle but sweet taste to them. It makes a small batch of 12 cupcakes, which is perfect when you want to share them with a few friends.


Share some love with your Honey! and make these Cupcakes. Or, you can make this no-bake Valentine’s classic of chocolate dipped strawberries I made last year, or these other Devil’s Food Cupcakes I made a couple years ago with fondant hearts.

Chocolate Honey Cupcakes

Makes 12


  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 Tbs vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

Honey Butter-cream Frosting

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3 tbs. Shortening
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 tbs. milk
  • 3-4 cups icing sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line muffin pan with paper liners.

In a stand mixer, whisk together milk, oil, sugar, honey, and vanilla extract until combined.  In large bowl whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and baking powder. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet and continue mixing until just combined.

Pour into liners, about 1/4 cup in each liner until 2/3 full. Bake 18 minutes or until a knife inserted into center comes out clean. Allow them to cool completely to room temperature.

To make buttercream, in a stand mixer with whisk attached whip butter and shortening until smooth. Slowly add the icing sugar one cup at a time. Adding vanilla, milk and honey as you go to thin it out. Add as much icing sugar until the desired consistency. It should be soft and not too stiff. To pipe onto the cupcakes, use a round tip and fill icing bag. Alternatively, you can use an offset spatula to ice the tops of the cupcakes.

*optional* you can add shaved chocolate to the top like I did. Using a good quality chocolate, break off a chunk about the size of your palm, or smaller. Microwave it about 10-15 seconds to soften the outsides. Using a regular carrot peeler, peel the top layer of chocolate to create curls. Place onto paper towel or dish until ready to use. Sprinkle the tops of the cupcakes with the shavings.

Cupcakes can be stored in container for 1-2 days.

Hope you all have a lovely Valentine’s!

Cupcakes, Valentine's Day

Queen of Hearts Valentine’s Cupcakes

February 8, 2009

*Please note, I have seen this photo on the web many times, used by other people without permission. This is a copyrighted image, property of ©  If you would like to use an image from my website please contact me first – Pleae read Contact & Copyright*

These decadent chocolate cupcakes topped with smooth silky buttercream are perfect for showing someone a litlte love this Valentine’s Day.

Devil’s Food Cake Recipe


  • 3/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup hot water
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • vanilla
  • 1 small individual apple sauce snack pack unsweetened, about 1/4 cup


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2.  Line baking tins with cupcake liners.
  3. Whisk together cocoa and hot water until smooth.
  4.  In medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and baking powder.
  5. Melt butter, and add the sugar. Pour into a mixing bowl.
  6. With an electric stand mixer on medium-low beat until mixture is cooled, about 5 minutes.
  7. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition scraping down sides of bowl as needed.
  8. Add vanilla (as much as you like), then cocoa mixture, and beat until combined.
  9. Reduce speed to low. Add flour, and apple sauce beating until just combined.
  10. Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each three- quarters full. I use a 1/4 measuring cup to do this.
  11. Bake, about 18-20 minutes, until toothpick inserted comes out clean with a few crumbs.


You can easily cut the time down for these cupcakes, if you’ve got your hands full, by starting with a devils food cake mix, and adding a pouch of chocolate fudge pudding to make it a little bit more ‘homemade.’ These are fun to decorate with kids, and can be brought to school for a Valentine’s Day Treat. Let the little ones cut out the heart shapes from the fondant and assemble them on the cupcake themselves!

Vanilla Frosting:
  • Confectioners Sugar ( About 4-5 cups ), Sifted
  • Pure Vanilla Extract (I use vanilla my brother brought me back from Mexico, its delicious and in a glass bottle with a cork!)
  • 1-2 Tbsp. Milk
  • 1 cup butter, softened

  1. Cream butter in mixer, medium for about 2-5 minutes until creamy and fluffy, scraping down bowl half way.
  2. Add 1/2 cup powdered sugar and beat until smooth, Add another 1/2 cup. Add about 2 tsp or more vanilla, to taste.
  3. Add gradually the remaining sugar and add milk until you reach the consitency you desire. A little bit thicker for piping would be best. If you are going to use a spatula to ice them, you can use a little less sugar and more milk for a thinner consitency to spread on the cupcake.
  4. Continue to mix on medium until smooth.
Using a large star tip, Ateco #848, pipe frosting onto cupcakes. You can decorate these in any way you desire. Try using different tips for different effects and texture.
Using Fondant Accessories
For garnish you can add heart sprinkles, or, using white Fondant (store bought or homemade MMF)  add color using colour gel. Add a small amount of desired color to fondant and knead untill the color is completely incorporated. I suggest wearing latex/rubber gloves for this so you do not dye your whole hand, like I sometimes do. You want it not to look like tie-dye. It should be fully incorporated to create a rich colour.
Using a rolling pin flatten out onto surface. To help it not stick, spread a small amount of cornstarch onto the counter. I dust mine over it straight from the box. Using cookie cutters, cut out different sized heart shapes and allow to dry on counter while you bake/frost cupcakes. You can also make these a day ahead and allow them to dry on a flat surface overnight. They will be easier to use once hard.
I made mine before I baked my cupcakes, and once I was finished I placed them in my cupcake courier, and the little fondant hearts started to fold over! They weren’t hard enough yet and began to go soft again once they were covered. So make sure if you are placing them into a covered container, that the hearts are fully hard or else they will wilt, and you will wake up to some broken hearts! Or, alternatively add the hearts to the cupcakes just before serving, so they stay fresh and do not soften up.

Happy Valentine’s Day!