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Valentine’s Brunch

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Across the globe, the month of February is synonymous with love and romance, especially the 14th. It is on this day that the world celebrates Valentine’s Day; the day to show that special someone just how much they are loved and appreciated.
On this day there is a plethora of flowers, cards, teddy bears, chocolates, lingerie etc.., just to name a few being purchased, not to mention restaurants that are filled to capacity as tables are fully booked on the night. Food and romance certainly go together like love and marriage and a horse and carriage as the old familiar jingle goes. Food pairs so well with human emotions. When we feel sad, we eat for comfort (well I do) and when we’re happy we celebrate with food, so what better way to kick off your Valentine’s Day this year than with a delicious heart-filled breakfast brunch.
I recently had the privilege of sharing my Valentine’s Day brunch ideas for the February issue of Durban’s infamous Get It Magazine. I had such a lot of fun preparing all the food and of course the photoshoot was just amazing. All the pictures were captured by Robyn Jessica Botha of Jessiebird Photography.
First up on the brunch menu is Poached eggs and heart-shaped bacon. The eggs were poached in the microwave using a special microwavable egg poacher which makes life so much simpler. For the heart shaped bacon I arranged the raw streaky bacon in heart shapes on a baking tray and baked at 220 degrees Celsius until crispy. Keep an eye on the bacon so it doesn’t burn. For the heart shaped toast, I toasted 2 slices of white bread (you can use brown) and cut out the heart shapes with a large heart cookie cutter once I’d buttered the toast.

Image courtesy of Jessiebird Photography http://www.jessiebird.co.za/

Blue Berry Heart-shaped crumpets
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
125ml sugar
250 ml milk
30ml butter or oil, melted
500ml cake flour, sifted
20ml baking powder
1 cup of blueberries
cinnamon sugar or maple syrup and bacon to serve
Method:
Beat together the eggs and sugar till light and creamy. Add 125ml milk and the melted butter or oil and stir well. Sift the dry ingredients. Add to the wet ingredients and add the remaining milk and blueberries. Mix well till a smooth batter is formed. Grease a heavy based frying pan with oil or butter and drop spoonfuls of the batter into the pan and turn over once you see bubbles form. Cook till golden on both sides.

Image courtesy of Jessiebird Photography http://www.jessiebird.co.za/

Yoghurt and muesli served with heart-shaped watermelon:

Image courtesy of Jessiebird Photography http://www.jessiebird.co.za/

Vanilla Heart Cake:
You can get the recipe here http://snapsizzleandcook.co.za/hot-milk-sponge-cake-2/. Once the cake is baked and cooled, you can cut a heart shape with your free hand or if you have a heart-shaped baking tin that would be first prize. This cake is covered in butter icing and decorated with coconut shavings for a more textured effect.

Image courtesy of Robyn Jessica Botha of Jessiebird Photography http://www.jessiebird.co.za

Puff Pastry Hearts:
One roll of store bought puff pastry, defrosted
Cinnamon
Sugar
Method:
Roll out pastry from wrapper. You should have a square of puff pastry in front of you. Cut 1cm lengths and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Take each length separately and roll from the ends towards the centre into a scroll shape. Once in a scroll shape, pinch the bottom end of the scroll to form a point for the heart. Place each heart on a baking tray, brush each one with a bit of melted butter. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes or until light and crispy.

Image courtesy of Jessiebird Photography http://www.jessiebird.co.za/

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