By KD Angle-Traegner, Founder & Editor
It’s hard to believe that it’s already February, but it is. You know what February brings don’t you? That’s right, Valentine’s Day. The day of love, chocolate, sweet treats, and heart-shaped everything.
My first memories of Valentine’s Day are from elementary school. The teacher would ask us to bring in a shoe box from home and we’d spend the day decorating it with red and pink construction paper hearts. Then, using the dullest scissors imaginable, we’d cut a slot in the top of the box. On Valentine’s Day, we set the boxes on top of our desks to collect valentine cards from our classmates. At the end of the day we were given a pink frosted cookie with a cup of a red-flavored drink to enjoy while we opened the valentines in our boxes. I loved everything about it. I loved going to the store to select my cards, writing them out to each of my friends, and sealing them with stickers. I loved being creative and decorating the box. It was so much fun.
I’m considerably older these days but I still enjoy the process of making something special for my loved ones. This year I decided to make coconut macaroon hearts. I used to make macaroons all the time in my early vegan days, I’m not really sure why I stopped. They’re super easy to make, full of healthy fats from the coconut and almonds, and they taste divine. Plus, I have to be honest- they make adorable little hearts.
I’m going to package these up in pretty little red baking cups and offer them to my Valentine. Here’s the recipe so you can do the same.
- • 2 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
- • 1/2 cup whole raw almonds
- • 3 tablespoons unrefined coconut oil
- • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- • 1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
- • 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1. Place almonds in a food processor and pulse into a fine flour. This is the base for the macaroons so it's important that the flour is as fine as you can get it. The finer the flour, the more silky smooth the macaroons will be. Place the flour in a separate bowl.
- 2. Place shredded coconut in the food processor and pulse into small pieces.
- 3. Add almond flour back into the food processor.
- 4. Add remaining ingredients and pulse until fully combined. The coconut mixture is now ready to use.
- 5. To make macaroon hearts: Place the coconut mixture between two sheets of wax paper (or parchment paper). Using your hands, press down to begin flattening the mixture. After the mixture is about 1/4 inch thick, continue to flatten it by rolling the top with a rolling pin- similar to rolling out cookie dough. Use a cookie cutter to cut out heart shapes and place on a baking sheet lined with wax paper.
- 6. Once all of the hearts are cut out, place the baking sheet in the fridge for 15 minutes or so to set.
- 7. Remove from fridge about 5 minutes prior to serving. Enjoy!
- Store macaroons in the fridge in an air-tight container.