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Valentine's Day recipes

Food columnist Mary Bailey has some ideas for great treats to serve to your sweetie.

Blue Cheese Gougeres

Gougere is a fancy name for cheese puff, bound to impress and simple to make. You can eat these out of the oven, or make ahead and store for up to a week in a cookie tin, or freeze. They are also delicious made with Gruyere, aged Canadian cheddar or Parmigiano. Drink with a full-bodied extra brut Champagne (a rose is especially nice) or a sparkling Shiraz for contrast.

1/4 c dry white wine

1/4 c water

1/4 c (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cubed

3/4 t fresh-cracked black pepper

1/4 t sea salt or kosher salt

2/3 c flour

3 large eggs, room temperature

1/3 c crumbled blue cheese (Quebec's St Agur, Poplar Ridge from the Naramata bench, or Italian Gorgonzola)

Preheat oven to 375°F.Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment.

Combine first 5 ingredients in heavy medium pan over medium heat.

Bring to a boil, and stir until butter has melted. Reduce heat to medium-low. and stir in flour 1/3 at a time, stirring constantly. Keep stirring until mixture forms large dough clumps and a film forms on bottom of saucepan, about 1 minute. Remove from heat. Cool 5 minutes.

Whisk eggs. Reserve 1 tablespoon of beaten egg. Add the rest of the beaten eggs to dough in saucepan, 1/3 at a time, and whisk until well-mixed.

The dough will be sticky). Stir in cheese.

Gently plop dough onto baking sheet, each about 1 inch apart, to make about 24 bite-sized drops. Give each a brush of beaten egg.

Bake gougères until they look dry and are a puffy, golden-brown, about 30 minutes.

Serve immediately, or at room temperature. To cook from frozen: heat in a 350 oven for about 5-7 minutes.


NAIT's Mascarpone and White Chocolate Dip

This recipe is from NAIT's Continuing Education Culinary program

6 oz white chocolate

1 c whipping cream

8 oz mascarpone

1 t vanilla extract

Melt white chocolate and ½ of the cream in a bowl set over a simmering pot of water. Cool to room temperature. Whisk remaining ½ of the cream with mascarpone and vanilla until smooth. Fold in the chocolate mixture. Serve with fresh fruit, (grapes, tangerine segments, berries in season) angel food cake or biscuits.



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