Happy and Healthy Valentine’s Day
Before you jump to conclusions and think we will only promote super healthy Valentine’s treats…think again! We understand the power of chocolate and know one day of indulgence won’t ruin your teeth. However, holidays can tend to extend beyond one day as candy piles up from class parties and exchanges with friends.
There are creative ways to hide fruits and vegetables in your child’s favorite delectable recipes without them ever having to know. We love this mix from Cutting Tiny Bites. It’s great if you are the snack mom at a class party or if you are looking for a fun alternative to put in your child’s lunchbox. It includes sweet and salty options that are mixed together to create a colorful snack mix: http://www.paper-and-glue.com/2015/01/valentine-snack-mix.html
However, if you are looking for a healthy alternative on Valentine’s Day, to one of those sweets your child refuses to live without, for example, cookies, have we found a recipe for you!
Love Heart Biscuits
Makes approx. 35 biscuits depending on the size of the cutter
Suitable for freezing
Suitable from age 10 months
- 1 1/2 cups ground almonds
• 1/4 cup dried sour cherries
• 1/2 cup coconut oil (or butter if you prefer and happy to include dairy)
• 4 tbsp maple syrup
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees, then combine the ground almonds and sour cherries in a large bowl.
- Gently melt the coconut oil over low heat in a pan. Remove from the heat and add the maple syrup and vanilla extract, stirring together. Then pour this liquid over the ground almonds and stir thoroughly to form a soft dough.
- Divide the dough into two balls. Place each ball onto a sheet of parchment paper, press down, then place a second piece of parchment over the top. Roll the dough out between the sheets of parchment to about ¼ inch thickness. Put onto a flat baking tray, then pop into the freezer for 10 minutes to firm up. (The parchment paper prevents the dough sticking to the rolling pin and makes this super easy. The freezer makes the dough firmer and easier to cut. Don’t miss these steps!)
- Remove from the freezer and use heart shaped cutters to cut out biscuits. Use a spatula to carefully lift the biscuits onto another lined baking sheet. Bake for 5-7 minutes until golden. Allow to cool for a couple of minutes on the tray, then transfer to a cooling rack.
- Roll up the leftover dough and repeat the process, rolling out between sheets of parchment and freezing for 10 minutes before cutting out. Repeat until all the dough is used up.
- Biscuits can be tied with ribbon or placed in a beautiful tin to give to a loved one. Or little ones can simply give them out to their ‘bestest friends’.
- The dough can be frozen in a ball in a freezer bag, defrosted in a couple of hours and rolled out. Or the baked biscuits can be frozen in a tub and defrosted in less than an hour.
Allergies and Substitutions
If dairy isn’t a problem, butter can be used. If nuts are a problem, you can replace the ground almonds with plain flour or gluten free flour. As flour is drier than almonds, you may need a little extra oil to bring the dough together.
Here are some other ideas for sweet treats that will keep your child satisfied, while protecting them from decay. https://thekindergartenconnection.com/healthy-valentines-day-snacks-kids/
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