Last year I started what I think will become a tradition - to bake something heart-themed and therefore slightly cheesy, for Valentine's Day.
This year I've noticed quite a bit of Valentine's backlash, and it makes me kind of sad... I know it's gone very commercial (like everything it seems; is it just me or was Halloween in particular really OTT last year?!) but surely you can enjoy it without having to buy into the commercialism. It seemed that nobody was even bothering to acknowledge it - at work people were saying things like 'we don't need Valentine's Day to show each other we care so we don't bother' - I mean, neither do we, but isn't it just nice to have a day where you can just celebrate what you have together?
Anyway, I digress... so last year I did some heart cupcakes, which I didn't think I was going to be able to top (and I don't think I did) but I want to do something other than cake, since we seemed to have eaten so much of it lately (more on that soon!) but I saw a recipe for these cherry shortbread hearts on the BBC Good Food website and thought I would give them a go especially since I haven't made shortbread yet.
Firstly, I was alarmed by how much butter was in them! A whole pack! It's not called 'all-butter' shortbread for nothing then, is it?! I was also a bit scared that it was a James Martin recipe so immediately thought it would be complicated and feature ingredients that I'd never heard of but it really was so simple and everything went smoothly. I don't know if I was using the wrong size cutter but it made about 22 biscuits and I also made a whole tray of mini hearts to take into work (yes, I had to force some Valentine's spirit into them somehow!) and STILL ended up throwing away some dough!
As is also tradition they had to be encased within something featuring hearts and this year I had the foresight to pick up a box from Clinton's rather than wrestling with an old Celebration's tub and some wrapping paper!
Here are the mini ones all bagged up to take into work.
One of the women in the office wasn't there when I came in with them, and I was so flattered when she tried one and then asked me where I'd bought them from! Hopefully I might get some commissions next Valentine's Day (if they can be persuaded to celebrate it of course!) ....