Valentine Indulgences

Valentine’s Day is as good an excuse as any, but these treats would be great any day.

By Wini Moranville

If you’re on the hunt for some sweets for your sweetie, check out the haul I recently brought home from Gateway Market:

• The Cake Confectionary’s Champagne Cake ($6.99): With its super-tender, thoroughly pink cake slathered in sweet and creamy pink frosting, this charming double-pink confection comes perfectly sized for two.

• Cashew Supreme Bark from Country Candies ($6.99): I generally eschew waxy, crumbly and sugary-sweet milk chocolate in favor of the more deep, complex and bitter flavors of dark. But sometimes the creamy mouthfeel and lasting finish of milk chocolate wins me over. That was the case with this nutty (and yes, unabashedly sweet) bark.

• Alden’s Organic Double Dutch Chocolate Ice Cream ($6.99): Dutch chocolate is made from a neutralized cocoa. The result is a chocolate that’s milder than dark chocolate, but darker and (to my palate) more deeply flavored than milk chocolate. This is one rich and creamy ice cream!

• Chocohigos Hand-Dipped Dark Chocolate Figs ($8.99): So, if it’s dark chocolate or nothing, these unique little bites should do the trick. Chewy and sweet (but not too sweet) figs in a robe of serious dark chocolate make each bite a heart-stealer for sure.

• Callebaut Milk Callets ($3.69/6 ounces): Please allow me one more pitch for milk chocolate. Melt these exceedingly high-quality chocolate disks into a ganache for your Valentine’s Day dessert for a taste of just how good a world-class milk chocolate can be. P.S.: I can also tell you they’re great for snacking.

Gateway Market is at 2002 Woodland Ave., 515-243-1754;

Wini Moranville writes about food, wine and dining for dsm magazine and dsmWeekly. Follow her on Facebook at All Things Food–DSM.

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