Valentine’s Day Punch Hearts

For this recipe I took inspiration from an Austrian pastry called Punschkrapfen.

They usually have the shape of squares, but I thought it would be nice to make heart shaped ones for Valentine’s Day.

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts

Sweet Punch Heart for Valentine’s Day

My first attempt yesterday didn’t turn out as I had planned: the cake was to high for the cookie cutter, so the hearts all were somewhat uneven. Also, the filling was too soft for being used with a cookie cutter. I had to place the cutter on top of a heart shaped cookie, fill it with the way too soft filling, put another cookie on top of it and then carefully pull the cookie cutter up without destroying the whole thing. I still managed to get them in shape, but it was very, very messy and time-consuming, I really don’t recommend that method.

It was so much work that I didn’t even bother to glaze them all, once I was finished. (They were really delicious though).

Valentine's Day Punch HeartsThe first attempt: somewhat messy production process, but very delicious outcome.

Today I made a second attempt: I used only half the amount of dough and a much larger baking tray. Unsurprisingly this time the cake turned out to be too flat 🙂

So I simply decided to turn this into a special feature of my very special Valentine’s Day Punch Hearts: instead of one filling between two cake layers they now contain two fillings between three cake layers.

Before I post the recipe just a couple of things in advance: making those Punch Hearts is a lot of work, it’s very messy and they are somewhat unhealthy, as they contain lots of sugar.

But hey, Valentine’s Day is only once a year, so it might as well be worth the effort and the extra calories on a special day and for a special person, and besides: I think they look really cute (and they taste great as well!).

Ingredients:

for the dough:

  • 90g sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 package of vanilla sugar (8g)
  • 120g flour
  • a bit of tumeric for a nice yellow colour (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 150ml water

additionally for the filling:

  • 55ml cherry liqueur rum (or regular rum)
  • 135g dark chocolate

for the glaze:

  • 200g powdered sugar
  • 50ml cherry liqueur rum (or regular rum)
  • red food dye

Preparations:

  • line a baking tray with parchment (the tray I used has a size of 37x26cm and the cake turned out very flat – I guess a smaller tray would be okay too)
  • preheat oven to 180°C/350°F

Cooking:

  • mix sugar, baking powder, flour and  vanilla sugar thoroughly (add a little tumeric if you want your dough to have a nice yellowish colour)
  • add oil and water, mix with a blender
  • pour the very liquid dough on the parchment paper that lies on your baking tray
  • shake the tray a little to make the dough spread evenly

Valentine's Day Punch HeartsThe dough in the tray before baking…

  • put the tray in the oven and bake for 10-15 minute; the time depends on the size of your tray (the surface should be of yellow/light golden colour, you can also do the toothpick test to find out the right moment for removing the tray from the oven)

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts… and after baking. Nice yellow colour.

  • let the cake cool off for at least 30 minutes
  • remove the parchment paper from the tray
  • now cut out hearts with a heart shaped cookie cutter; I cut out 27 cookies for 9 punch hearts

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…cutting out the hearts.

  • make sure there’s enough cake leftovers, because you will need those  for the filling; I weighted my cookies and leftovers: the cookies weighted about 60% of the original cake, the leftovers 40%

Valentine's Day Punch HeartsThe leftover cake parts.

  • now put the leftovers in a bowl and crumble into smaller pieces
  • add cherry liqueur rum, then mash the soft, soaked crumbles with a fork (maybe start with less than 55ml rum and add more if necessary)

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…soaked in rum and mashed.

  • melt dark chocolate in the microwave oven; it should be soft, but not too hot
  • mix the melted chocolate with the rum soaked cake mash

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…mixed with melted chocolate.

  • the consistency of the cake mash should be soft enough to be spread on the parchment, being cut with the cookie cutter and stick with the cookies, but not so soft that it will loose its shape or melt away – depending on the amount of cake leftovers you started with, the amount of rum and melted chocolate you are going to need may vary; also the cake mash will get a little harder once the chocolate has cooled off, so you may want to wait a little or put the filling in the fridge for some time
  • spread some of the filling on a piece of parchment paper and use the cookie cutter to cut out a heart; remove the heart (by carefully lifting it up with a knife, if it sticks to the parchment paper) and place it on a cookie

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…cutting the filling, layering the punch cakes

  • place another cookie on top, another filling on that one and a third cookie on top of it, so that each little cake has 5 layers (if your cookies turn out to be much higher than mine, you can stick with a three-layered cookie-filling-cookie)
  • now it’s time for the glazing; put the powdered sugar and rum in a bowl and mix thoroughly; I recommend not to start with the whole 200g sugar/50ml rum, but with maybe half of the amount, and then slowly add either more sugar if it’s too liquid or more rum if it’s too viscid
  • add as much red food dye as you like, for bright red or tender pink
  • place each cake on a fork, and pour the sugar glaze over it

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…glacing the little cakes with pink or red sugar icing.

  • place the cakes on a little paper muffin cup
  • eat and enjoy – but not all at once 🙂 I calculated that each of the 9 punch hearts I made has a little over 300kcals.

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…delicious!

Creamy Tofu Fondue in Bread

Oh dear… what a feast. On days like these you can feel that digesting is really hard work for the body.

There’s one good thing about those decadent silvester meals though: any danger of underweight is definitely banned for another two weeks.

Yesterday I made, as I mentioned in the previous post, our traditional silvester meal: a creamy tofu fondue in a loaf of bread.

tofu fondue in bread

Unfortunately it didn’t turn out as perfect as I hoped it would: the bread was bigger as usually (I used more dough), so the amount of tofu sauce didn’t suffice to fill it up completely. Nevertheless it tasted great, as it always does.

Here’s how it’s done:

Ingredients:

bread:

  • 600g white flour
  • 1 tablespoon of dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ca 500ml lukewarm water

(or alternatively buy a loaf of soft white bread)

tofu sauce:

  • 350g soft tofu (silk tofu or any other that can be blended into a smooth tofu cream)
  • 250ml soy cream (or soy milk, if you don’t have cream)
  • eventually up to 200ml more soy milk, if you want the fondue to be more liquid
  • 1 bag of jelly powder (12g) or alternatively corn starch or carob gum
  • 1-2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 pulp elephant garlic or 3-4 garlic cloves (grated or crushed)
  • some salt and pepper
  • optionally some more garlic powder

also optionally some veggis for dipping:

  • carots
  • cauliflower
  • broccoli
  • … or whatever you like

Cooking:

bread:

  • mix the dry ingredients
  • add water and knead dough thoroughly until it’s smooth
  • let rise on a warm place for about an hour
  • knead again, then form a round loaf and put it on a greased baking tray or on a baking sheet
    tofu fondue in bread
  • preheat oven to 180°C/350°F while you let the bread rise for another 10-15 minutes
  • put bread in oven and bake for ca 30 minutes until it’s done
  • take bread out of the oven and let cool, eventually brush surface with water, as it’s easier to cut when it’s soft
    tofu fondue in bread
  • cut a round hole in the top and remove the lid
    tofu fondue in bread
  • now hollow out the loaf, but don’t remove too much of the soft stuff – you don’t want the loaf to get leakyOtofu fondue in bread
  • cut or rip the removed soft bread from the inside into little pieces, put them aside and cover with plastic wrap, so they won’t dry out – you’ll need them later for dipping

tofu sauce:

  • break tofu into smaller chunks or crush with a fork
  • then put tofu in blender and blend until it’s smooth and creamy
  • add soy cream/soy milk and blend again
  • add jelly powder, spices and elephant garlic, blend again
    tofu fondue in bread
  • put tofu sauce into a pot and boil up for a couple of minutes, while stirring continuouslytofu fondue in bread
  • pour tofu sauce in the hollow loaf of bread and cover with bread lid
  • wrap loaf into tin foil – if you don’t it will burn!
  • put wrapped loaf on a baking tray and bake at 180°C/350°F for about 30 minutes
  • you can unwrap the top of the loaf towards the end of the baking time if you prefer your bread to be more crispy

Once the baking time is over, unwrap your loaf and serve it with the bread you removed from the inside and, optionally, some veggis  or whatever else you like to dip.

tofu fondue in bread