And now for a love story…
When M and I first started dating, I lived in a small one bedroom apartment on a busy corner in a trendy hipster neighborhood in San Diego. I had a cute little patio and people were always walking by heading to the local bar, restaurant, book store, or just out walking their dogs. It was excellent for people watching but not private at all. Nevertheless, I really enjoyed hosting dinners out there on my little patio, especially for my new boyfriend who couldn’t seem to get enough of my cooking!
M and I had been dating for a couple of months when I decided to make a romantic dinner. I dressed up my patio table with a pretty cloth, lit candles, chilled a bottle of wine, made a delicious dinner and got all dolled up. We sat there as if in a fancy restaurant, using our best table manners, having stimulating conversation, gazing in each other’s eyes over candlelight and smiling at all the passersby who looked at us like they had just stepped into a romantic movie.
Everything was perfect: the sun was setting, the food was delicious and the wine complemented it beautifully. M said all the right things and was the perfect gentleman with the perfect manners. I remember thinking this guy is pretty awesome. Then all of a sudden, in the midst of describing something with a bit too much gusto, he made a big gesture with his arms and knocked his wine glass over, splashing wine all over his food, the table and himself. He looked mortified and utterly embarrassed. I turned to him, smiled and laughed and that is the moment I knew I was in love with him.
Now, four and half years later, we are married and expecting our first child. M has since knocked over countless glasses of wine with his over-expressive gestures and every time I fall in love a little more with my eloquent goofball.
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!
Baked Strawberry Balsamic Donuts
Servings: 12 • Size: 1 donut • Weight Watcher Points+: 5
Calories: 167 • Fat: 2g • Carbs: 38g • Fiber: 1g • Protein: 5g
Sugars: 21g • Sodium: 284mg • Cholesterol: 35mg
- 1 cup diced strawberries
- 2 Tablespoons balsamic reduction*
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 Tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- ¼ 1% milk
- ¼ cup fat free Greek yogurt
- ¼ cup Neufchatel cheese (or light cream cheese)
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- 1-2 Tablespoons water
To make the donuts, stir together the strawberries and balsamic reduction in a small bowl and let macerate for 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter and honey. Add the eggs, milk and yogurt and whisk to thoroughly combine. Pour the wet ingredients and macerated strawberries into the dry ingredients and stir just until combined.
Spoon the mixture into a donut pan coated with cooking spray and bake 7-9 minutes or until the donut springs back to the touch. Let cool a few minutes in the pan before removing. Transfer to a cooling rack with wax paper underneath and spoon on the glaze.
To make the glaze, beat together the Neufchatel, powdered sugar and vanilla. Add in just enough water to loosen the glaze to a thick syrup.
*To make balsamic reduction, bring balsamic vinegar to a boil in a small saucepan. Reduce heat to simmer for 15 minutes or until vinegar thickens into a syrup. It will further thicken upon cooling.