So everywhere you look it’s all hearts, love and mega boxes of chocolates. Like Christmas and Easter; Valentine’s Day poses challenges if you are trying to eat clean or stay sugar free. I’ve put together some suggestions and recipes to help you stay on track.
Firstly, start the day off right with some flourless pancakes served in bed with your favourite coffee and Sunday paper. Make them extra special by frying them in a heart shaped ring from Tiger for €3. These would make a super cute stack and can be served with Greek yogurt and fruit or crisp rashers and maple syrup. You can find the recipe here…..
If your other half loves toast Tiger also have cute latte stencils for €2. These have a love heart or ‘I Love You’ options. Why no decorate their favourite breakfast with cinnamon on freshly buttered toast with these stencils!
So on to the main event, dinner! If you haven’t splurged on an overpriced packed restaurant you’re probably eating your favourite dish at home. And your favourite dinner would not be complete without a dessert. Now most desserts can be made with sugar substitutions or with reduced sugar content. But my two suggestions are:
Chocolate dipped strawberries
Get some of your five a day with this slightly devilish treat. Using 85% cocoa makes this a low sugar alternative with healthy benefits of dark chocolate!
Chocolate chia pudding for dessert
Greatist have a great chia seed pudding post with recipes including fruity and chocolatey ones. These puddings are a great alternative to sugar laden traditional puddings.
If after your romantic meal you are planning on cuddling up on the couch why not make these healthy sweet treats:
I used organic popcorn kernels from The Hopsack in Rathmines. Three small handfuls makes enough for the large mixing bowl so you’ll have some left over for movie nights to come!
50g of melted butter
2 teaspooons of vanilla extract
1 tablespoon of coconut oil
50g of popcorn kernels
Beat together butter and vanilla, then set aside. Melt the coconut oil in a pan and add popcorn kernels. I used a heavy based frying pan covered with tin foil. Use an oven mitt to hold down the tin foil, we had a few stray ones in the kitchen! Shake the pan occasionally, once there is three seconds between pops the popcorn is ready. Wait for a few minutes for any late pops. Put in a large bowl, pour over the vanilla butter, sprinkle with cinnamon and serve!
Healthy chocolates with raspberry filling
These chocolates are also dairy and refined sugar free.
For the chocolates
½ cup coconut oil
½ cup raw cacao
2 tablespoons coconut cream (I made mine by putting a can of coconut milk in the fridge overnight)
1 tablespoon maple syrup
For the Raspberry Chia Jam
½ cup frozen raspberries, defrosted
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon chia seeds
Combine basic chocolate ingredients. Fill silicone heart-shaped ice cube trays halfway. Freeze for 5 minutes until hard. Combine Raspberry Chia Jam filling and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Dollop a half a teaspoon of jam in centre of heart and top with remaining chocolate mixture. Place in fridge to set.
I initially used ice cubes moulds but Tiger had confectionary wrappers for €2! Makes a cuter Valentine’s surprise! Hope you enjoy the treats and Valentine’s Day, be great to hear some of your recipes or treats for the special day!
Stay healthy X