This week, living with Tim, in Nashville, in our third year of marriage, was:
Cold days with no snow (it just barely missed us!).
Cuddled up mornings, side by side on the sofa on our laptops.
The demise of a succulent plant.
And, on two different mornings, these frothy dessert shakes made with bananas, peanut butter, and Carrie Vitt’s four-ingredient recipe for homemade chocolate syrup, all so I could add (my best attempt at) hearts on top.
“It is not necessary to have an extravagant food budget in order to serve things with variety and tastefully cooked. It is not necessary to have expensive food on the plates before they can enter the dining room as things of beauty in colour and texture. Food should be served with real care as to the colour and texture on the plates, as well as with imaginative taste. This is where artistic talent and aesthetic expression and fulfillment come in.” Edith Schaeffer
Chocolate Heart Shakes with Carrie Vitt’s Homemade Chocolate Syrup
If the New Year's pear stacks taught us anything, it was that I'm a sucker for pretty food--and that's why it's probably no surprise that the peanut butter banana shakes in the February 2014 issue of Better Homes & Gardens caught my eye. Whoever dragged the hearts in that magazine picture's shakes is an artist! Gorgeous! And I liked the idea so much, in fact, that I earmarked the page, made homemade chocolate syrup, and tried it twice this week. Rich, creamy, frothy, and chocolately, it's a dessert-like drink to put a pep in your step.
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 medium ripe bananas, cut up
- 1/4 cup creamy organic peanut butter
- 1/4 cup homemade chocolate syrup (below)
- 1 cup whole-milk yogurt
- Extra syrup, for drizzling
Blend milk, bananas, peanut butter, chocolate syrup, and yogurt in a blender or high-powered Vitamix until smooth. Pour into glasses and drip a little extra chocolate syrup on the top. Use a toothpick to drag hearts through the syrup drops. Enjoy!
We like making this recipe for the two of us, with a large 16-ounce portion each, but you could also divvy it up into typical 8-ounce glasses and have four servings.
Carrie Vitt’s Homemade Chocolate Syrup
Recipe and method taken from Carrie Vitt at Deliciously Organic. I know I've mentioned Carrie here a number of times, but if you aren't already familiar with her site, it's worth a visit. Every recipe of hers I've ever tried has been excellent, not to mention filled with wholesome ingredients. ps bonus Carrie's a total sweetheart, too.
- 1 cup (235 ml) maple syrup
- 1 1/2 cups (355 ml) water
- 1 3/4 cups (116 g) cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons vanilla
In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring maple syrup and water to a simmer. Whisk in cocoa powder until fully combined; remove pan from heat; stir in vanilla extract. Pour mixture through a fine mesh sieve and store in a glass jar or BPA-free plastic containers like these. When removing from fridge, shake or stir before pouring. Carrie says the sauce keeps, refrigerated, for up to 3 weeks.