Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Get Ready for Valentine Day!!!!

Hello Ladies,
As Valentine day is coming up soon, I thought I could dedicate this issue to this amazing Holiday…Some people say it’s corny and that it serves marketing purposes but I love it. Whatever excuse I have to spend a romantic evening with my husband is good. I get to prepare something special and do a craft with the kids, it is so nice. I like to make a big deal out of it.
Anyway, I’ve selected a few of my favorite things and I hope you’ll enjoy them as much as me….

The Mimi Foundation lollipop, my kids love it and it is for a good cause, you can find the sale points on This foundation is dear to my heart because my mom created it a couple of years ago!!!! So anything I can do to help!

It is always nice to spice up the evening with a little surprise!!!!!
I often go on the website of Victoria Secret ( , they have nice things and it is not too expensive. They propose a selection for Valentine that I like! I’ve selected something amusing!

They make these cute box sets, the first one is the” Tickle Me Intimacy Love Kit” and the second one is the ”Tease Party Sweet, Seduction Kit”.

Sephora ( makes these heart shaped bath oil….A few candles in the bathroom, a few rose petals in the bath and you add these at the last minute just for the ‘waouw’ effect…..
Coeurs de Bain Fraise Framboise

Cadeau Ladurée (
Nothings beats the Macaron from Ladurée. They also make beautiful boxes et scented candles….. These below are caramel, ‘brioche’ or ‘marrons glacés’. Makes you want to eat them!

As Belgium is known the be The country for chocolate, I could not do this issue without suggesting them!

I like the Godiva box for Valentine… (

And I love the chocolate they made at Marcolini (

I always do a crafts with my kids, this year we’re making hand flowers….
You put red painting on your kids hands, so they can make nice hand prints on a piece of paper, you cut the hand prints. You glue these on an ice cream stick (that you’ve painted in green) and it
makes a beautiful ‘bouquet’! See for yourself!

For the cocktails ( even if you don’t like to drink, just for the look of it!!!!!) Dita Von Teese imagined this precious box set for Cointreau, I love it!!!! (

 And last but not least, a Valentine Menu!!!!!
Chocolate, wine, and food have long been valuable tools for the art of seduction and Valentine's Day. Since the earliest aphrodisiacs, people have recognized that food has an innate power over loved ones. This Valentine's Day, show your better half how much you care by creating a romantic and sensual home-cooked meal. Simple things can set the mood of the evening, for example spicy food will get your heart rate going and make your cheeks flush. Other food can be lovingly hand fed to each other, creating intimate moments. Keeping in mind that we don’t want to spend the entire day and evening cooking, I came up with a nice and quite simple menu.

Amuse bouche :  heart shaped toast with cream cheese and smoked salmon… (you can do all sorts of toasts…)

Appetizer : pears with prosciuto ( it is not really melon season…)

Entrée: Risotto (I got this great recipe from Jamie Oliver web site You can do it with any kind of veggies : asparagus, peas, courgettes, mushrooms, or just plain….
Ingredients (serves 6) :
• approx• 1.1 litres/2 pints stock (chicken, fish or vegetable as appropriate)
• 1 knob of butter
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 large onion, finely chopped
• 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
• ½ a head of celery, finely chopped
• 400g/14oz risotto rice
• 2 wineglasses of dry white vermouth (dry Martini or Noilly Prat) or dry white wine
• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 70g/2½oz butter
• 115g/4oz freshly grated Parmesan cheese
stage 1 Heat the stock. In a separate pan heat the olive oil and butter, add the onions, garlic and celery, and fry very slowly for about 15 minutes without colouring. When the vegetables have softened, add the rice and turn up the heat.
stage 2  The rice will now begin to lightly fry, so keep stirring it. After a minute it will look slightly translucent. Add the wine and keep stirring — it will smell fantastic. Any harsh alcohol flavours will evaporate and leave the rice with a tasty essence.
stage 3  Once the wine has cooked into the rice, add your first ladle of hot stock and a good pinch of salt. Turn down the heat to a simmer so the rice doesn’t cook too quickly on the outside. Keep adding ladlefuls of stock, stirring and almost massaging the creamy starch out of the rice, allowing each ladleful to be absorbed before adding the next. This will take around 15 minutes. Taste the rice — is it cooked? Carry on adding stock until the rice is soft but with a slight bite. Don’t forget to check the seasoning carefully. If you run out of stock before the rice is cooked, add some boiling water.
stage 4  Remove from the heat and add the butter and Parmesan. Stir well. Place a lid on the pan and allow to sit for 2 minutes. This is the most important part of making the perfect risotto, as this is when it becomes outrageously creamy and oozy like it should be. Eat it as soon as possible, while the risotto retains its beautiful texture.

Dessert : Valentine Cupcakes and chocolate strawberries

• 2 cups all purpose flour
• 1 1/2 cups sugar
• 3 teaspoons baking powder
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 4 egg whites from large eggs
• 1/2 cup shortening
• 1 cup 2% milk
• 2 large eggs
• 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line cupcake pans with paper liners.
Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, shortening, milk and vanilla  in a large mixing bowl.  Mix at low speed for 2 minutes.  Scrape bowl.  Add egg whites and mix at high speed until fluffy and smooth, approximately 2 minutes.
Fill liners 1/2 to 2/3 full of batter.  Do not overfill.  Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool 10 minutes in pans then remove from pan, and place on wire racks to cool completely.
Frost and decorate your vanilla cupcakes as desired.

(I’ve found this on this web site, if you want to do chocolate strawberries, it is amazing :

There you go ladies, I hope it helps,
Enjoy !!!!

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