Friday, February 13, 2015

World's best Valentine save

Photograph ©2015, Lori Korleski Richardson
It's Feb. 13, and you realize that you haven't gotten your sweetie anything for Valentines Day.

(It happens. I remember one night a city editor at our newspaper ran around gathering up all the red and white carnations the pizza guy had delivered with the pizzas so he'd have something to bring his wife when he finally got off work one Feb. 14.)

Don't sweat it. Tonight, make sure you have the following available:

12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
1 can fat-free sweetened condensed milk
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
Nuts (optional)
Sea salt or kosher salt

 Tomorrow morning, suggest your love attend a matinee with a friend, something you know she wants to see but you don't. While she's gone, turn on the oven to 170 degrees, open a 12-ounce bag of semisweet chocolate chips (make sure they are real chocolate) and empty it in an 8-by-8-inch pan that you have lined with foil and sprayed with cooking spray. Spread them out. Then open a can of fat-free sweetened condensed milk and pour it over the chips. Put the pan in the oven. It should take about 15 minutes to melt. In the meantime, get out some vanilla extract, sea salt (or kosher salt) and if she likes nuts, a small bag of chopped pecans, walnuts, filberts, macadamias, pistachios or almonds. When you take the pan out, add 1½ teaspoons vanilla and mix the chocolate and milk quickly, gently (you don't want to tear the foil) and thoroughly. Smooth it out so that it goes into all the corners. Add the nuts and press them into the mixture, then lightly salt it all over. Put it in the refrigerator to set up for at least two hours. Take it out of the fridge, turn it out on a chopping board, peel off the foil, and cut it into little squares. Put the squares on a pretty plate, wrap in plastic, and put a bow on top of it.

Could hardly be easier. And hey, it's chocolate!

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