Image courtesy of woolgirl.typepad.com
I had wanted to write a history of Valentine’s Day food this week, but then I realized that so many great stories have already been written. So this is your Valentine’s Day Food News, including a history of conversation hearts, a top 10 list of Valentine’s Day customs, and a chocolate caramel recipe from 1881 that was used as inspiration to create a modern dish.
History of Conversation Hearts: The conversation heart was invented in the 1800s, but the sayings have changed with the times. (can anyone guess what “I Heart EC” means?). The Huffington Post has the full history on conversation hearts.
Valentine’s Day Customs: Did you know that English women in the 1700s would lay bay leaves on their pillows to see their future husband in their dreams? Or that when a French woman served a man eggs on Valentine’s Day in 1956, that meant she wasn’t interested? These are some of the 10 Valentine’s Day customs compiled by Smithsonian magazine.
1881 Chocolate Caramels: Amanda Hesser asked two chefs from San Francisco to participate in her Recipe Redux: she gave them a chocolate caramel recipe from 1881 to use as inspiration for a new dish. The result? Black-Sugar-Glazed Medjool Dates with Pecorino and Walnuts. There’s also an updated chocolate caramel recipe (scroll down) if you’d like to try making these old-time sweets.
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Posted in Fun Food Bites, Pop Culture, tagged bobby flay, chocolate, chocolate videos, emeril lagasse, food network, giada de laurentiis, ina garten, nigella lawson on February 4, 2010|
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February 2011 Update
The Food Network has many videos about chocolate for Valentine’s Day, from holding a chocolate tasting to making chocolate truffles and hearts. Flip through the videos here.
(l to r): Nigella's Old-Fashioned Chocolate Cake, Emeril's Spiced and Spiked Hot Chocolate, Bobby's Chocolate Compone, and Giada's Gianduja Souffles
For a long, long, long time I was single on Valentine’s Day. In fact, I was single about 90% of the year or more. So I always thought Valentine’s Day was a terrible, stupid, discriminatory holiday. Except for two things that is: conversation hearts and chocolate.
Yes, the chocolate, especially the heart boxes full of M&Ms or vanilla butter creams. This I liked about Valentine’s Day.
Even though I’m married now, I still think chocolate is the best part of the holiday. (Hmm, I hope my husband doesn’t read this and take that statement the wrong way.) What I mean is, chocolate is a benefit everyone can appreciate.
That’s why I love the Food Network’s chocolate weekend. Take a look at this list of 5 shows on Saturday and Sunday to find one that fits your chocolate personality. The list reflects my love of the sweet side of chocolate, but you can look at the Food Network’s full TV schedule for Saturday and Sunday to find the shows that highlight chocolate’s savory side.
Continue Reading “5 Food Network Chocolate Shows This Weekend”
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The Mayans Making Chocolate
To get kids interested in math and science, Towson University’s Hackerman Academy holds Saturday events like Spiders on the Planet Mercury, Intergalactic Tour of the Universe, and the lovely workshop I attended – The Science of Chocolate! Nearly every seat in the auditorium was filled, showing that chocolate is a great way to get kids interested in science.
But chocolate is a fun topic for kids and adults. This workshop was packed with lots of information about chocolate’s history and production followed by the main reason we were all there – the chocolate taste test!
Continue Reading “The Science of Chocolate, Part I – History”
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