Any day is a good day for chocolate . . . especially on Valentine’s Day! Apparently many people agree with me because according to economic reports, America manufactures seven billion pounds of chocolate each year and consumes almost 100 pounds of the confection per second! Additionally, studies have shown that eating dark chocolate provides certain health benefits, such as a reduction in high blood pressure and LDL cholesterol levels by up to 10 percent. Chocolate also stimulates endorphin production which gives a feeling of pleasure, and contains serotonin which acts as an anti-depressant! It’s very gratifying to know that by eating chocolate, we can contribute to the economic health of the nation and the physical health of our bodies!
So what do you say we get busy and do our part today?
Chocolate Covered Cherries
60 maraschino cherries with stems
3 Tablespoons of butter
¼ teaspoon of salt
3 tablespoons corn syrup
2 cups of confectioner’s sugar – sifted
1-1/2 lb. sweet dark or milk chocolate
Drain the cherries on paper towels. Combine butter, corn syrup and salt. Stir in sugar. Knead until smooth. Shape the dough into marble-sized pieces and mold around the cherries. Place on a waxed paper-lined baking sheet and chill. In a double boiler over hot water, melt chocolate stirring constantly. (Do not add water to the chocolate.) Holding the stems of the fondant-molded cherries, carefully dip them one at a time into the chocolate, using a spoon to completely coat it. Place on waxed paper in a refrigerator to harden. Store in a covered container in the fridge and let ripen for 2 weeks so the fondant will liquefy. No cheating! They are well worth the wait!
FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Unfortunately, because today is February 15th, this creation will be “a day late and a chocolate dessert short” for Valentine’s Day! I regret I didn’t think to do this two weeks ago, so I would have been able to enjoy my sweet reward on Valentine’s Day! I can only blame it on poor planning and a lack of preparation on my part! Thankfully, I’ll have another opportunity next year to be better prepared for this special day.
Let me tell you, though, there is another “special day” ahead, a “once in a lifetime event”, for which we’ll have no second chance to make things right. It will be the day when we transition from this life to eternity. 1 John 5:12 says “Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.” Are you prepared for that day? Do you have the right ingredient, a life surrendered to the Son of God as Lord and Savior, so you will be able to enjoy your sweet reward on that day?
Jesus said: “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.” (John 14:6)
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Romans 3:23) “If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” (1 John 1:10) “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners. Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16) “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” (Romans 10:9) “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:10) “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13)
Tomorrow could be your eternal Valentine’s Day. I pray you’ve planned ahead and are prepared for that special day!
— Cheri Henderson