LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) - With Valentine’s Day falling in the middle of the week this year, it may be a bit difficult to whip up a decadent dessert. Keeping it fun, and playful this year is probably the right way to go. Janine Washle from Cloverfield's Farm and Kitchen demonstrates how to make Brownie and Peanut Butter Love Boats and Loaded Brownie Pizza.

There are several legends surrounding Valentine’s Day. The most famous is that Valentine, a doctor and priest, began treating the blind daughter of one of Emperor Claudius II's prison guards in an attempt to restore her sight. He fell in love with his patient and sent a note to the girl, signed "from your Valentine.” He was incarcerated for his religious beliefs and refusal to renounce Christianity. After his execution, allegedly the girl’s vision was posthumously-restored by his treatment and faith at the very time she was reading his last words. Valentine was canonized by Pope Gelasius in 496, and his feast day was celebrated until its removal in 1969 from liturgical calendars.

Other historians believe the holiday derives from the Roman festival of Lupercalia, which was celebrated on February 15. This was a fertility celebration of the Roman god Faunus, the god of flocks and fertility, to ensure fertility and easy births by the women of the community. One custom was for young maidens to write love letters, which would be drawn by unmarried men who subsequently courted the ladies.

Another icon associated with Valentine's Day is the ever-present Cupid (aka: Eros and Amor), the little cherub who was the son of Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty. The young, playful god was known as the god of love, and is most often depicted in art flying around with a bow and arrow, shooting love into the hearts of the unsuspecting. Of course, Cupid and the heart became the symbols of love and Valentine's Day.

Most likely, all these stories merged together over the centuries to become the holiday we celebrate today. Food plays a major part in the celebration of this holiday. Chocolate being the most famous food of love has antioxidants to fight aging, compounds that enhance feelings of happiness, mineral compounds that fight depression, and contains a chemical that increases concentration and focus. Taking this clinical approach to chocolate and translating it into everyday language means that chocolate makes us look younger, act happier, feel better, and smarter. Why wouldn’t we want to indulge? So, keeping it fun this year just got easier with a couple desserts that rely heavily on supermarket staples: taco boats, and brownie mix.

Soft Peanut Butter Cookies

Makes: 18-24

Ingredients:

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup packed light brown sugar

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup creamy or crunchy peanut butter

2 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

Preparation:

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In a mixer, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the peanut butter until combined. Beat in the eggs and vanilla.

Stir in the flour mixture until just combined. Cover and chill the dough for at least 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a couple sheet pans with parchment paper.

Form the dough into 1-1/2-inch (walnut size) balls using a 1-ounce cookie scoop and place on the lined sheet pan 2-inches apart. Make hashtag on top with the back of a dinner fork.

Bake for 11-14 minutes or until the cookies are just set on the edges and lightly browned. Let them cool for a few minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Janine Washle's CloverFields Farm & Kitchen

Hardin Springs Area

Big Clifty, KY 42712

Connect with Janine and Cloverfields Farm & Kitchen on the websiteFacebookYoutube and Pinterest.

Cloverfields Farm and Kitchen also has a special Fall Comfort Foods Recipe Booklet available by email. To ask for a complimentary copy, just email Janine Washle at cloverfields.farm.ky@gmail.com

About Janine Washle:

CloverFields Farm & Kitchen is primarily an on-line destination. They are not open to drop-in visitors as it is a private residence. CloverFields Kitchen researches and reinterprets many traditional recipes using local produce, much from their own gardens, and adding a global perspective. Janine is working on her first cookbook, but she also has a long resume developing recipes for several companies. She has also won several contests and cook-offs with her original recipes.

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