Today is the highest of the high holidays of chocolate. Nestled between Halloween and Christmas on one side and Easter and Mothers’ Day on the other, confection affection reaches a frenzy for Valentine’s Day.
And that means, once again, chocolate has oozed its sweet, smooth, silky self into all my waking hours. I’ve been sending chocolates all over the United States, to help people show their love to far-flung friends, lovers, and relatives.
It’s great fun to be part of this celebration, as folks try to decide just what combination of candies will best please their loved ones. All dark chocolate for some, no dark chocolate for others. No lemon or pumpkin seeds, please, but extra ginger or coconut would be great! Tastes are so individual and givers want everything to be perfect, especially on this day.
I also love writing up the note cards to accompany the candy I mail. I make up little stories to fit the odd or mysterious sentiments and imagine how pleased the daddy will be to get the candy from his children.
People aren’t just treating their love ones. I’m here to tell you that LOTS of people are treating themselves. As we’ve always been told, you need to love yourself first!
To be honest, all of this intense focus on chocolate means that it sort of loses its Valentine’s Day cachet for me. When you have chocolates on every free surface and are honor bound to do regular taste testing, you don’t need a special holiday devoted to chocolate! Every day is chocolate day!
As for my Valentine and me, we’ll celebrate by shoveling the most recent foot of snow. Then we’re planning a dinner that will evoke warmth and summer and picnics—Michigans, coleslaw, potato salad. If I’m lucky, my Valentine will play some “honey songs” on the guitar for me. And we’ll probably have some chocolate but we do that everyday!
And, in the spirit of full disclosure, I’ll tell you that I almost never make truffles—I just couldn’t resist that blog title.
Truffles are so incredibly easy to make (2-3 ingredients and no need to temper chocolate?!), it seems wrong to take money for making them! And, the fact that they depend heavily on cream means that they aren’t as shelf stable as a lot of candy so mailing them and taking the risk that they might spoil unnerves me.
So instead of truffles, I make chocolate melt aways, combining tempered chocolate with a little coconut oil and flavoring oil. And, even though I just said I don’t get too excited about chocolate on Valentine’s Day, an Irish cream melt away might just get me to re-consider!
I hope your Valentine’s Day brings a happy balance of affection and confections!