I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Valentine’s Day is my favorite holiday! I look forward to it all year long, and I’m so excited that tomorrow is the big day! Valentine’s Day is probably a little less exciting for me now than it was when I was young and single, but it’s much more enjoyable because I get to celebrate it with my little family. I love the opportunity to give everyone in my family a little treat or small gift, and remind them of how much I love them!
This year my husband is scheduled to work on Valentine’s Day, so we decided to celebrate a few days early with our traditional Valentine’s breakfast! I made these delicious raspberry almond muffins, along with some bacon and scrambled eggs, and we had a lovely breakfast. The muffins turn out so yummy! I let the raspberries break up a little bit, so they were scattered throughout the muffins, and they were the perfect little burst of tartness in contrast to the sweet muffins. Yum!
Raspberry Almond Heart Muffins
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon almond extract
4 ounces fresh raspberries, cut in half
Preheat the oven to 400. Spray a muffin tin (I used this one) with cooking spray. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. In a small bowl, combine the oil, egg, milk, and almond extract. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and mix until just combined. Stir in the raspberries (it’s okay if they get broken up a little bit. Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tin, filling nearly to the top. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned.
I always choose a little something fun for each member of my family, and put it on their plate. In past years I’ve given my kids new books to read, cute stuffed animals, Valentine’s socks and tights, water bottles, and bubbles. This year I couldn’t find anything I really liked, so I just went with candy, fruit snacks, and washi tape (because my kids are OBSESSED with tape). I always get a treat for my husband, too, and this year I got him a gift certificate to our favorite doughnut shop (Pip’s Original, for any of you Portland locals).
I really like to add fresh flowers to the table, too. When we were younger (and poorer), this was a little more of a novelty, but since we live so close to Trader Joe’s now (and aren’t starving students anymore), I buy fresh flowers at least twice a month. These red tulips were so pretty, I couldn’t pass them up!
I love seeing my kids’ facial expressions when they see their gifts! It’s like a mini Christmas morning for them. 🙂 Our annual breakfast is really nothing very fancy or original, but it’s something we all look forward to, and love!