This adorable Valentine’s Day ‘bark’ comes together in quickly for all you last-minute folks. The bark itself is a mix of candy melts and strawberry cake icing for a softer texture and a different flavor than usual. Top with seasonally-colored jelly beans and sprinkles for extra festive spirit! Check out Easter decorating supplies for the pastel colors and bunny shapes used here.
I had half a container of strawberry frosting leftover and a bit of pink candy coating from my cake pops so I thought I’d see what I could throw together. The ratio of frosting to candy melts is a little guesstimated but the measurements listed in the recipe should be fine. To check out my Strawberry Pop Tart Pops post, just follow the link below.
Valentine’s Day is bumming me out this year because of my drunk breakup trifle. I am looking forward to the 15th because I’ll have some time to travel around town buying a bunch of fancy chocolate on the cheap. Those things aside, I thought I’d look into the history of Valentine’s Day for this post.
As I’m sure you all know, Valentine’s Day takes place on February 14th and is also known as the Feast of Saint Valentine. The holiday initially celebrated one or more early Christian saints named Valentinus. There are about a dozen Catholic saints by this name and one pope. The most popular Valentine story is about a Roman Christian who was imprisoned for ministering to and marrying Christians. Some versions of the story contend that Emperor Claudius II banned marriage for all young men, not just Christians, because he thought single men would make better soldiers. During his imprisonment, he healed his jailer’s daughter. Some versions of the story contend that Emperor Claudius II banned marriage for all young men, not just Christians, because he thought single men would make better soldiers and wrote her a letter signed ‘your Valentine’ before his execution.
Saint Valentine is the patron saint of engaged couples and happy marriages. He may also be called on for issues relating to lovers, beekeeping, epilepsy, the plague, fainting and traveling. His skull is on display at the Basilica of Santa Maria in Cosmedin, Rome.
Some claim the Christian church placed this feast day in the middle of February in an attempt to Christianize the pagan holiday of Lupercalia, which was traditionally celebrated on the ides or the 15th. It was a fertility festival dedicated to Faunus, Roman god of agriculture, and to Roman founders Romulus and Remus. Roman priests would gather in a sacred cave and sacrifice both a goat and a dog. The goat’s hide would be cut into strips, dipped in blood and used to slap women and crops. How romantic. Really makes your BF’s gift seem a lot better. At the end of the day, all single women would put their names in an urn. The single men would draw names and be paired with that woman for one year. These pairings would often lead to marriage.
Valentine’s Day was not associated with romantic love until the High Middle Ages (11th-13th centuries) when courtly love was popular. Courtly love involved knights and damsels, nobility and virtue. Think of old-timey princess and the dragon stories. In 18th century England, lovers began to express their love for each other on Valentine’s Day with gifts. These gifts included flowers, candy and greeting cards called ‘valentines.’ By the 1840s, most of the English-speaking world celebrated Valentine’s Day as a romantic holiday. Around this time, Richard Cadbury had perfected his recipe for ‘eating chocolate.’ He is said to have produced and sold the first heart-shaped box of chocolates.
Other Valentine’s Day Treats:
Somebunny Loves Me Strawberry Frosting Bark
4 oz vanilla Candiquik
½ cup pink and red jelly beans
Melt together frosting and candiquik in the microwave until completely smooth.
Spread mixture onto parchment-lined baking sheet.
Sprinkle jelly beans and sprinkles evenly over top of mixture.
Leave in freezer 15-20 minutes or until set.
Break into pieces or use sturdy metal cookie cutters to make shapes.
Store leftovers in freezer.