Okay so if i'm giving full disclosure here, I am not a romantic. I love a good Rom Com and I love traditions but in terms of the romance dept my hubby trumps me every time. And on Valentines Day he always goes all out. He makes me narrated videos of our life together, flowers, candy, outings... the whole package. Me? A card, some candy from the kids and one of his favorite meals and a present of some sort. But there is always the looming in the back of my head that i'm contributing to a corporate made holiday (hey no judging, I started the post telling you how I wasn't a romantic). And with two kids in tow now it definitely doesn't make it easier to do such items as you now get to factor them into the mix too at this point in life, so i'm always looking/ thinking up ways to knock out two items at once. Enter DIY valentines fortune cookies. All can play a part in the making of the cookies, thereby hitting the togetherness time factor and it can then serve as your kid's valentines day treats to their class mates! (even satisfying the parents who need to know every ingredient in the food you serve as you control the ingridients in this cookie).
If you don't have any kiddies yet then it can be a project for you and your mate or a valentines day project for you and your gals. Since you're making the cookies yourselves you also get to make the fortunes inside. I have my 6 y/o do this part and he loves it as he gets to write personalized notes to all his friends. If you're looking for spicy have you and your mate write fortunes to each other and make this your desert after that valentines take out dinner or restaurant tromp (just make sure these don't make it to the kids school or you'll be getting a different kind of letter written to you from the teacher). Any I digress...the recipe is easy to follow and substitution is allowable. If you want to leave out the almond extract, add more vanilla extract. If you want to leave out eggs try applesauce in place as these cookies don't really need that much leavening. Use mason jar lids with the middle out to drop your batter into on your baking sheet, it will make that circle perfect, just make you move it before baking. I'm giving you portions for a double recipe as well. And lastly I used silpat and parchment paper to see which one i liked more to give me the brown edges I was looking for in my cookies. I have to say i'm swaying towards the silpat but if you don;t have either just make sure your cookie sheet is heavily greased and don't try to make more than 3 a time as you have to work fast to mold them into the fortune cookie shape. Qǐng xiǎngyòng! (that's enjoy in Chinese)
Recipe makes 24 fortune cookies. Make sure you have 24 strips of tiny paper written with whatever you want on them pre made:
1 cup sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
4 large egg whites
pinch of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg (pick one or none)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
In a bowl mix together the sugar, flour, and salt and cinnamon (if you're using) In a separate bowl, whisk together the extracts and egg whites. Sift in the dry ingredients and whisk until you have a smooth batter.
Spread 1 tablespoon of batter into a 3-inch circle on the baking sheet fitted with silpat or parchment paper (use the lid of a mason jar as a guide, see above). Make a total of 3 circles on the baking sheet. Bake until the edges are brown 6 minutes.
Working quickly use a spatula to flip a circle over. Place a fortune in the center, fold the circle in half and then pick it up and bend the folded side over the edge of a bowl to form a fortune cookie shape. Place in a muffin tin or empty egg carton so the shape holds while it cools. Repeat with the remaining circles.