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Valentine's Day

 

Share the Love on Valentine’s Day

Jenny HarperIt’s true — the kitchen is the heart of the home. Ever notice how people always gather there? Whether baking treats, making dinner or spending time with family and friends, the kitchen is my favorite place to be. Since my day job is Consumer Test Kitchen Project Manager for the Nestlé Test Kitchens, you can bet I love to stir things up. This column lets me pass along to you some of my best recipes, tips and baking secrets.

(Family Features) I’m glad that Valentine’s Day is on a Sunday this year. Without the busy weekday morning rush to get everybody off to school and work, we can take a little extra time to sit down together for a special Valentine’s Day breakfast.

These Heavenly Heart-Shaped Pancakes don’t take a lot of time to make, so we can enjoy a warm breakfast and good conversation. Sounds heavenly!

There are plenty of other simple ways you can show your love all day long:

Dress It Up – Instead of the everyday dishes and placemats, why not dress up the table with the good stuff? Set a pretty table and sprinkle it with heart-shaped confetti to make the whole family feel special. A candlelit breakfast – why not?

Write Love Notes – Leave little notes around the house that tell your family some of the many reasons you love them. “I love your sense of humor!” “You give the best hugs.” “I’m proud of who you are.” There are lots of little things you can say to make a big impact on others.

Create Some Togetherness – Some days are so busy that it’s hard to tell whether you’re coming or going. So set aside some time to do something as a family – play a favorite board or card game; bake some heart-shaped cookies and enjoy them with a movie; go through family scrapbooks and photos. Spending time with each other is a great way to show love and make new memories.

For more delicious ways to share the love on Valentine’s Day, visit Tollhouse.com.

Heavenly Heart-Shaped Pancakes

Makes 18 pancakes

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup (6 ounces) Nestlé Toll House Semi-Sweet Chocolate Mini Morsels

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt
 

Heart shaped pancakes
1 3/4 cups milk

2 large eggs

1/3 cup vegetable oil, plus more for the griddle and cookie cutters

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

3-inch heart-shaped metal cookie cutters (optional)

Powdered sugar

COMBINE flour, morsels, baking powder and salt in large bowl. Combine milk, eggs, oil and brown sugar in medium bowl; add to flour mixture. Stir just until moistened (batter may be lumpy).

HEAT griddle or skillet over medium heat; brush lightly with oil. Pour 1/4 cup batter onto hot griddle into the shape of a heart; cook until bubbles begin to burst. Turn; continue to cook about 1 minute longer or until golden. Repeat with remaining batter. (For perfectly shaped pancakes, brush inside of cookie cutters with oil; place on griddle. Pour about 1/4 cup batter into the cookie cutters and cook until bubbles begin to burst. Remove cookie cutters. Turn; continue to cook about 1 minute longer or until golden.)

SPRINKLE with powdered sugar before serving.

Nutrition Information per serving: 210 calories; 90 calories from fat; 10g total fat; 3.5g saturated fat; 25mg cholesterol; 150mg sodium; 27g carbohydrate; 1g fiber; 12g sugars; 4g protein

Jenny Harper is Consumer Test Kitchen Project Manager for the Nestlé Test Kitchens and VeryBestBaking.com.

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