Valentine food fun. Four gift ideas that are tasty, all red Essay

A far cry from chocolates, flowers and cands, these little red-hued
edibles nonetheless carry their own affectionate message. All four are
simple to make, and each can be made ahead. Heart Beets

Serve these whimsical heart-shaped beets as a relish or in a salad.

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Drain and reserve the liquid of 1 jar or can (1 lb.) pickled sliced
beets. Cut beets into heart shapes with a small (1- to 2- inch)
heart-shaped cooky cutter or sharp knife. Combine beets and liquid and
return to beet jar or a jar that has at least 1-cup capacity. Put on
lid. Serve, or refrigerate up to 3 weeks. Tie a ribbon around jar to
decorate. MAkes 1/2 cup heart beets. Red Onion Relish

Vinegar turns the onions pink. Serve the relish with meats, in
sandwiches, or for nibbling. 1-1/2 pounds (about 3 medium-size) red
onions 1/4 cup each olive oil or salad oil 1/4 cup red wine vinegar

Peel onions; cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices and separate
into rings.

In a 10- to 12-inch frying pan, combine oil, viengar, and onions.
Cook, stirring occassionally, over medium to medium-low heat until
onions are limp, about 30 minutes; let cool.

Spoon onion relish into a 2-cup jar and chill. Serve or
refrigerate as long as 2 weeks. Makes about 2 cups. REd Hot and Nuts
for You

Mix cinnamon-flavored candies and peanuts together to make this
quick valentine gift.

Mix 1 package (9-1/2 oz.) hot red cinnamon candies and 1 jar (12
oz. or 2-1/2 cups) salted or unsalted dry roasted peanuts. Pour into a
3-1/2- to 4-cup container (glass, preferably) and cover tighly. Serve
or store at room temperature up to 2 weeks. Makes about 3-1/2 cups.
Red Red Pepper Jam

Makes just one jar as a special gift; the jam keeps for weeks in
the refrigerator. 1-1/2 pounds (about 4 medium-size) red bell pepeprs 2
teaspoons salt Cold water 3/4 cup each sugar and white wine vinegar 1/2
teaspoon each ground nutmeg and crushed dried hot red chilies

Wash peppers; discard cores and seeds. Finely chope peppers and
put into a alrge bowl with salt and enough cold water to cover. Cover
with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours; drain.
Rinse peppers well with cold water; drain again.

In a 3- to 4-quart pan, combined peppers, sugar, vinegar, nutmeg,
and crushed dried chilies. Bring to a boil, uncovered, over high heat.
Reduce heat and simmer about 40 minutes, stirring frequently, until the
cooled mixture has the consistency of cold honey; drop a little onto a
chilled glass dish to test.

Spoon into a 1-1/2- to 2-cup jar; cover and let cool. Chill at
least overnight before serving. To store, refrigerate up to 3 weeks.
Makes about 1-1/2 cups.


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