Valentine's Day is a funny holiday. Don't you think? It seems that people are either totally for it or totally against it. You want my two cents? Of course you do. To me, any day that (perhaps somewhat forcibly) pressures you into acknowledging and celebrating love, any kind of love, is a special day indeed.
Single? That's okay. Celebrate the love for your family or for your furry companions! Hey, I've seen "From The Dog" Valentine's Day cards (and yes, I secretly hope to get one...) Can't stand the awful commercialization of the holiday? What with the candy, flowers, and cards? That's okay, one doesn't have to participate in purchasing Valentine specific merchandise! Instead of a card, I handwrite Todd a poem about our year's events. Complete with red cut-out hearts, fancy cursive penmanship, and waxing lyrical rhymes.
One need not to drown in chocolates (I eat the stuff pretty much errryday), or cards (I think they are kind of wasteful and usually insincere), or flowers (I love getting them, but to each their own). Pink is my favorite color (as a mammographer it's mandatory), and I love...love. So, come February 14th I'm pretty giddy. Let's just celebrate love! I'm dedicating this post to my very loving family who is always at the ready with a vegan version of Valentine's cookies to decorate. To my special furry child who is never not over-the-top, completely insane with joy to see me when I come home from work. And of course to my true love, Todd. What to say? Where would I be without him?
A few blood oranges came in my CSA box, and I thought it'd be fun to use them for a Valentine's Day recipe. I've been wanting to make tapioca pudding for a long time and I thought the two would be great together! Why not?! I crossed my fingers it would turn out to be pink too!
This is a uniquely pink Valentine’s Day dessert. A nod to retro desserts. A delicious orange tapioca pudding. Call this whatever you want, but it’s an unexpected twist on a usually modest dessert that’s sure to be a hit.
As you can see, and much to my chagrin, my oranges were rather...well...disappointingly orangy. There were only a few streaks and flecks of red here and there. However, with a little help from some cherry juice, this tapioca was Valentine's Day ready in a pinch!
Aren't they beautiful? Here's to love. In it's many forms.
Cinnamon Blood Orange Tapioca Pudding
A uniquely pink Valentine’s Day dessert. A nod to retro desserts. A delicious orange tapioca pudding. Call this whatever you want, but it’s an unexpected twist on a usually modest dessert that’s sure to be a hit. NOTES: Feel free to add a splash of cherry or beet juice to color this tapioca pudding more deeply pink if your blood oranges aren't exactly “bloody”. If the milk you use isn't sweetened, you may want to add a bit more sugar. The xanthan gum is optional but lends an extra smooth creaminess.
- 1/2 cup small pearl tapioca (not the instant kind)
- 2 1/4 cups soymilk
- juice from 2 blood oranges (about ¾ cup)
- scant 2/3 cup vegan sugar
- dash of salt
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum (optional)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Soak the tapioca pearls in water overnight or for eight hours, then drain them. Place the pearls in a large, heavy bottomed saucepan. I use my dutch oven.
- Add all the ingredients excluding the vanilla. Over high heat, whisk well to combine, ensuring there are no cinnamon clumps. Set the timer for 15 minutes. Switch to using a silicon spatula and stir the tapioca continuously until boiling. Be sure to run the spatula along the bottom of the pan so the tapioca doesn’t begin to form on the bottom. Reduce heat to a simmer and continue to stir continuously.
- The tapioca is done when it has thickened considerably and the pearls are completely translucent, about 15 minutes. There should not be a white center in the pearls at all. If there this, they need more time.
- Carefully transfer the pudding into ramekins or cups and place on a wire cooling rack. Allow to rest for at least 10 minutes before serving. Serve warm, or cover with cling wrap and place in the fridge to serve chilled.
- Garnish with orange zest, a dash of cinnamon, a streak of coconut cream, and/or black sesame seeds to make a really very visually lovely dessert.
Happy Valentine's Day!
Dutch Word of The Day
Valentine's Day --> Valentijnsdag (valentines-dah)
Good Deed of The Day
Did you hear about this from The Huffington Post? Several different groups filed two lawsuits recently, alleging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is failing to address air pollution problems from large-scale livestock farms. "We are nauseated at times from this choking smell of hydrogen sulfide and ammonia as well as the odor of decaying animals." Nice. That's where "meat" comes from, huh?