WIC Kitchen: Heart-shaped food helps celebrate Valentine's Day
Feb. 8, 2023
By Sierra Rosales
Now that it’s February, love is in the air. Holidays such as Valentine’s Day remind us to be a little sweeter, kinder and to share the love. Some people might see Valentine’s Day as a reminder that they are single, but Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be about having a significant other.
Valentine’s Day has a few possible origin stories. None are like the commercialized holiday we know today. There are mentions of St. Valentine throughout early Europe. Some believe St. Valentine performed covert marriages during a time when they were outlawed while others believe he was a prisoner who secretly sent out “valentines” to his love.
During the 20th century, the holiday began to boom with mass-produced greeting cards. This was the beginning of the Valentine’s Day we have come to know.
This month’s recipes are inspired by my mother. Every Valentine’s Day, she would wake up extra early to make my brother and me special breakfasts. It usually included heart-shaped pancakes, heart-shaped eggs and even strawberries she cut in half and made into hearts. It never mattered if I had a significant other on Valentine's Day because she would make me feel special and loved no matter what.
I wanted to share some heart-shaped breakfast ideas and a special heart-shaped snack for those who don’t love breakfast. I encourage you to have multiple valentines this year and spread the love. Maybe invite a friend over to try the heart-shaped egg bites or take over some heart-shaped fried zucchini to a lonely neighbor. Get creative and share the love!
Heart-Shaped Fried Zucchini
(One large zucchini*)
One cup breadcrumbs
1/2 cup flour
1. Cut zucchini into thick slices. Then cut slices into heart shapes. If you have a large zucchini and a heart-shaped cookie cutter, you can use that as well.
2. Mix up eggs in one bowl, put flour in another bowl and then season your breadcrumbs however you like in another bowl. I usually add seasoned salt, salt and pepper to my breadcrumbs.
3. Dip the zucchini hearts in egg, then flour, back into the egg and then in the breadcrumbs.
4. If the zucchini gets slightly deformed from the coating, mold it back into a heart with your fingers. The coating is easily moveable.
5. Air fry or bake at 400 degrees for about 12 minutes. Make sure to flip halfway through.
6. Pair with marinara or ranch and enjoy!
Heart-Shaped Egg Bites
(One serving size)
Red bell pepper*
Spinach* or bacon bits
1. Coat your skillet with butter or nonstick cooking spray. Cut pepper into slices that are under ½-inch wide. Connect slices at the bottom with toothpicks to create a V. Then add additional slices to make the top of the heart. Connect it all together with toothpicks, then add to the pan.
2. Put the skillet on low and put an egg in the middle of the heart without breaking the yolk. Top the egg off with bacon bits and cheese.
OR: Scramble the egg, spinach and chopped up red pepper together in a bowl then pour into the center of the heart. Then top with cheese.
3. Cover the skillet until your egg is cooked to your liking.
WIC Kitchen is a monthly food feature that also runs in the Dominion Post. Items marked with an asterisk* are available through Monongalia County Health Department WIC. Please contact us at 304-598-5181 for more information.