Welcome to Simple Fare, Fairly Simple. This is a place for me to post recipes of all kinds...along with other miscellaneous fodder from my so-called life here in the south. Who knows what you will find here. Could be anything from my husband...known as IT Guy...to my kids and beautiful grandbabies that are growing up way too fast right before my eyes. But...mostly this will be a place for food. I hope you'll see something you like and if you decide to try something from the list...leave me a comment and let me know!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentine Treats!!

As I was scrounging around for a quick treat to make this weekend, I decided that it needed to be something heart shaped. You know...with V-Day coming up and all, I figured it's the least I could do. I'm going to make a red velvet cake on Monday but as I was preparing to make the treats you're about to see, I figured I'd do a little decorating while I was at it. As I've said before, I'm not known for my decorating skills, but what I ended up doing was pretty stinkin' cute. And easy. So if you're looking for a treat to take to a Valentine party, may I suggest these little guys. Really, they're nothing that most likely hasn't been seen before...but just a little twist on a couple of old favorites.

Chocolate Hearts

1 brownie mix

Make brownies according to package directions except use the directions for the "cake like" brownies. You want these to have to "ooomph" behind then. Bake them in a jelly roll pan if you have it....or a rimmed cookie sheet. You want the brownies to end up about one...maybe a little less than...inch thick. Make sure you spray your pan well with a non-stick cooking spray. Also...if you have it...use some parchment paper on the bottom of the pan. It'll make it easier when you take the brownies out the pan in one big slab. After your brownies are cooked AND COOLED...flip the pan upside down on your work surface. Then take your heart shaped cookie cookie...or whatever cookie cutter you like...and start makin' hearts! Make sure and have a plan of attack so you get as many brownies out of the slab that you can. My brownie mix was for a 9x9 inch pan, but my jelly roll pan was 10x17 so it worked perfect for me. I was able to get about 12 heart shaped brownies out of my slab....then we snacked on the scraps.

Now you need to decide what kind of decorating you want to do. I had some valentine stencils that I used with powdered sugar...very cute. I also had some canned frosting that I used for a few of the brownies. I took about 1 cup and heated it up in the microwave for about 20 seconds so it was a little runny. Then I dunked a few brownies in that then sprinkled on some valentine decorations.

I used good ole' DH brownie mix....

Prepare your pan.....

Pour in the batter. Cook it up!

Let it cool completely.

Flip it over...I used my big cutting board.

Then using your cookie cutter...go to town!

I found these at Michael's for about $1.00. They're so fun!

Place your stencil over the brownie and cover up any exposed areas that you
don't want powdered sugar on.

Then sprinkle!

See? Cute, huh?

I warmed about 1 cup of frosting...

..then I dunked the brownies in the frosting then threw on some goodies.
Make sure you dunk the bottom of the brownies because the top of the brownie
will flake off into your bowl of frosting.

This next little idea is even easier than the brownies.

Rice Krispie Hearts

I'm a HUGE Rice Krispie Treat junkie. I love them. I add extra marshmallow to mine to make them extra yummy...but that's just how I roll. I've trained my kids to expect extra marshmallow in them. One time, when my nephew was just a little guy, he came over and I had some and he asked me what I did to make them so good. I told him it was just extra marshmallow. I'm not sure my sister-in-law has ever forgiven me because I know he went home and told his mom that Aunt Val's treats were better than hers.

So...just make a regular batch of Rice Krispie treats....with extra marshmallow if you want to be adored by all. But make them using the same kind of pan you used for the brownies. Mine turned out to be about an inch thick...perfect for the size of my cutter. Again...make sure you plan accordingly to make the most of your blanket of rice krispies. Cut them out to whatever shape floats your boat. Then I melted some white chocolate with a little heavy cream and drizzled that over the cut out hearts. Then I had some red sprinkles that I put over then chocolate while it was still wet.

So if you need to take a treat to the office or school or leave some for your mailman....try these two ideas. Everybody loves brownies and marshmallow treats....well, actually I can think of a couple of friends who aren't marshmallow fans...but kids love 'em! And the kid in you will too!!

Make your rice krispie treats...with extra marshmallow if you want to be like me.

Let them set up and then flip them out of the pan.

Then cut out your shapes and decorate!