Thursday, February 10, 2011
They're heeeere! Vegantine's Day Strawberry Love Bugs!
Brace yourself for the post with the most pictures eva'! It will hog up all your bandwidth! It will break the interwebs! The planet will implode! Took it too far?
The Strawberry Love Bugs are back! Remember the ones I made in 2009? These are pretty much the same, except that I printed out their little signs instead of making them by hand.
Which one are you teaming up with for Vegantine's Day? I *heart* You or Love Stinks? If you've been reading my blog for a while, then you probably know that I always like to throw in a Mr. Grumpy Pants along with the happy faces, you know, for balance. Wanna make some? First you're going to need to wash and pat dry about a pound of strawberries...
Then you're going to need about two ounces of melted semi-sweet chocolate chips. I melt mine in the microwave at half power, stirring every 45 seconds. If you're a proper double-boiler person, then go for it. Dip the tips of the strawberries in the melted chocolate...
I use bamboo picks to dip them, but you can use regular toothpicks too. Place the strawberries upside down inside a small ramekin or other fairly shallow container...
Refrigerate the strawberries while you make the antennae. The antennae are totally optional, and I'm not going to lie to you, they can be a pain in the gluteus maximus. If you want to make them, check if your melted chocolate needs a few more seconds in the microwave to soften it up. Mine did. Then transfer it to a small ziploc and cut a small tip off one of the corners. You can print out my antennae pattern if you would like to use it, then tape it to a chopping board and tape a piece of wax paper on top of the pattern paper. When you're ready, use your chocolate-loaded ziploc bag to trace the little swirly antennae. If you have no idea how to do that, check out my chocolate spider-legs video that might paint a clearer picture.
Place the chopping board in the freezer and let's make some buggy dots! Use the same ziploc to drop little dots all over the tops of the strawberries, except for the heads, of course.
This next step is also optional, but I like to flatten the chocolate dots with a hot (dry!) knife.
Totally optional, and maybe even unnecessary. But I like them better flat...
Now it's time to draw some eyes and mouth on'em. I used melted vegan white chocolate chips, but you can also make them with a very stiff powdered sugar and water icing. Use another ziploc to pipe the melted chocolate/sugar icing and draw their little faces. Mr. Grumpy Pants needs a pair of grumpy eyebrows.
Now pipe a little drop of the semi-sweet chocolate in the center (or not!) of each eye. Or you can dip a toothpick into the melted chocolate and then "poke" the center of each eye. Also, this would be a good time to attach the antennae. Use a generous drop of melted chocolate as glue, on top of their heads, and then quickly attach the antennae. If your hands are too hot and the antennae melt in your hands, you can always use some kitchen-only tweezers to grab them.
Now they need their signs! You can make your own or you can print mine out if you want. I *heart* You signs are here, and Love Stinks signs are here. Your choice! Just cut out the signs and tape a toothpick to the back of each sign.
Insert the signs to the top/back of each Love Bug and you're done!
At this point I realized that the leaves were looking a little dry and ugleh, so I trimmed them...
Did you guys catch my Gluten-Free Almond Butter Blondies at Go Dairy Free? Alisa is the coolest and she invited me to do another guest post! These are a gluten-free version of my wheat-based almond butter blondies. These wheatless goodies are fudgy, rich, almondy, and they have a yummy crusty top, which is absolutely necessary in a blondie. Amirite or amirite? Thank you, Alisa! :)