Easy Valentine’s Day desserts

heart shaped dessert with strawberries and raspberries
Decorate with a variety of fresh berries and finish it off with a sprinkle of powdered sugar Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina

Valentine’s Day is coming up, and a lot of us, students, are indecisive when it comes to choosing a romantic gift for our loved ones. But a homemade dessert is a great solution its tasty treat made from love!


“Pavlova” is a dessert based on meringue. It is believed that the cake, stuffed with cream and fruits, appeared as a result of admiration of a Russian ballet dancer.

Decorate with a variety of fresh berries and finish it off with a sprinkle of powdered sugar Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina


  • Egg whites – 4
  • Granulated sugar – 1.5 cups
  • Cornstarch – 2 tsp.
  • Lemon juice-few drops (not necessary, but helps)
  • Whipping cream- 16 oz
  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
pavlova ingredients
The ingredients you’ll need for pavlova. Don’t forget the granulated sugar Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina

1. Whisk the egg whites with any mixer until they form stiff peaks. Gradually add sugar without stopping to whisk, until the meringue becomes glossy. At the very end, add sifted starch and lemon juice – literally a few drops. Lemon juice does stabilize the meringue, but it is not necessary.

The meringue should be glossy and it should not be dripping. Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina

2. Draw an outline of a heart on one side of a parchment, and then flip the paper over, so our meringue doesn’t come in contact with the pencil. Place the mixture in a ziplock bag, cut the edge and pipe the meringue filling in the heart outline; Create a thicker border around the heart and allowing the inner section of the heart have less product. Lastly, with a fork create a texture along the edges of the heart and draw thin grooves on the top of the meringue to give the illusion of a ballet tutu.

Pipe the meringue filling in the heart outline Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina

3. Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the meringue for about 30 minutes (depending on the size). Turn off and open the oven allowing the dessert to rest in the oven with the door completely open. open the door. Leave the dessert in the open oven until completely cooled.

4. Whip the cream with 2 tbsp of sugar. Fill the cake right before serving, otherwise, the meringue will get wet. Decorate with a variety of fresh berries, finish it off with a sprinkle of powdered sugar and bon appétite!

chopped berries
Use any kind of berries or fruits you’d like. Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina


  • You can check if the meringue is ready by inserting a toothpick into it, it should be crisp on the outside. Inside depends on your preferences, but it should not be foamy.
  • For the egg white to whisk properly, they should not come into contact with grease or water. So make sure your mixer and a bowl are clean and dry.


Panna cotta

To those of you who don’t have access to the oven or a mixer, I offer an amazing alternative. Panna cotta is an easy dessert to make, infused with the delicate taste of vanilla and strawberry.

A great way to add a colorful accent to your dessert – two strawberry hearts. Just slice one strawberry in half. Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina



  • Gelatin- 3 tsp or 1 packet (8 grams)
  • Water- 3.5 tbsp (48 grams)
  • Whipping cream- 1 cup
  • Milk- ½ cup
  • Granulated Sugar- 60 grams
  • Vanilla extract-1tsp
The ingredients you’ll need to make a pannacotta Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina



  • I did half of my recipe flavored, so I took strawberry Jello- about ¼ packet or 20 grams and cut my unflavored gelatin down to ½ of a packet (4gr). I used 1.5 tbsp (24gr) of water per each flavor.
Adding a Jello to your pannacotta will add color and flavor to it. Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina
  • Want to make a panna cotta with lavender, tea, chamomile? No problem, just replace the 1 tsp of vanilla with a spoonful of loose-leaved teas into a diffuser. Such a simple and elegant way to enhance the flavor of your panna cotta.

    tea infusion
    You can infuse your pannacotta with almost anything. Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina


  1. We begin with gelatin. Add water and stir. Wait about 3-4 minutes until the gelatin is soft and swollen.
  2. Add the cream, milk, vanilla and sugar in the pan. Boil over medium heat.
A great way to infuse your pannacotta is by adding a spoonful of tea into a diffuser. Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina

4. As soon as the ingredients begin to boil, remove it from the heat.

5. Gently mix everything immediately with a whisk until all of the gelatin is dispersed evenly.

6. Pour the mixture into a mold including cup, or any small glass container. I used ramekins. Allow the mass to cool slightly and refrigerate for five hours.

I like to pour pannacotta in ramekins for a quick serving Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina

There are three ways to serve your panna cotta

  1. You can submerge the bottom of the mold in hot water for a couple of seconds. This process allows the outer edge to soften releasing suction.The desert should then slide out of the mold leaving you with a beautiful panna cotta on your plate. However, if you chose this make sure not to leave dessert in the hot water for too long. The heat can compensate the shape of your delicate dessert.
  2. The second method is personally my favorite – pour the panna cotta mixture into silicone molds and place it in the freezer for 10-12 hours. Then you just turn out the silicone mold, leaving you with a gorgeous dessert with the sturdy ideal shape. To ensure that the product has the right consistency, all the dessert to rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
  3. You can save your self the struggle of ruining your precious panna cotta simply serve your dessert in a ramekin or a beautiful glass.
Strawberry flavored Pannacotta
Strawberry and chocolate is a match made in heaven. So sprinkle your flavored pannacotta with some shaved chocolate. Photo credit: Evgeniya Emolkina