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I’ve never been big on Valentine’s Day. To me, romance is being thoughtful and considerate every day – in fact, the big gestures make me cringe (when OH proposed a few years ago my immediate response was: ‘What are you doing? Get up!’)
But I must admit I’ve softened to the concept in recent years.
The lowdown is this: we’re not actually married *shock, horror* so we don’t have a wedding anniversary to celebrate, and neither of us can remember when, exactly, we got together (I want to say July..? Maybe August..?). After 15 years and two children together, I think it’s nice – important even – to mark the fact we’ve made it this far.
We’ve created our own Valentine’s Day tradition by making it a family day; we’ll go for a walk at one of the gorgeous National Trust properties nearby, then stop off for a pub lunch. Once the girls are in bed OH and I will cook up a nice bit of rib-eye steak, and watch a movie. Perfect!
I’m never going to be a soft music and heart-shaped balloons kinda girl, but do like to show I’ve put some thought into it, so this year the girls and I decided to make Daddy some guilt-free Valentine’s Day brownies.
We’re making a concerted effort to cut down on sugar, so I found this brownie recipe online, which substitutes nasty refined sugar for apple sauce and maple syrup. Instead of butter or fat it uses avocado to give soft creaminess.
The girls and I headed to the local Co-operative supermarket to pick up cocoa powder.
The girls love helping out in the kitchen, so couldn’t wait to get home and put on their aprons. While I weighed out all the ingredients Big Sis took charge of blending the avocado and Lil Sis went wild with the whisk.
Once all the ingredients were mixed together, I popped the brownie tray in the oven for 25 minutes. The most delicious chocolate-y smell began to fill the house. ‘Muu-umm,’ the girls asked every five minutes, ‘when will they be ready..?’
I pulled them out and let them cool down, before cutting a bit off for the all-important taste test.
‘What do you think?’ I asked the girls. They chewed silently for a second, then both gave me the thumbs up. ‘Delicious!’ they declared.
We gave them a dusting of icing sugar, and cut them into small squares.
Next, we wrapped them in cellophane, and tied them with heart ribbon. Finally, I got Big Sis to write a little message onto a blank gift tag, and attached it to the brownie bundle with a twist of florist wire.
What do you think of Daddy’s guilt-free Valentine’s Day treats?