You Deserve Better Than Out-of-Season Strawberries on Valentine’s Day

Photograph by Laura Murray

It makes sense why we think we should buy or make chocolate-covered strawberries on Valentine’s Day. Pop culture has sold us on the idea that this sweet berry is the symbol of love. With a shape that roughly resembles a heart, it’s easy to believe that this fruit is romantic. Dip it in chocolate and it becomes sexy.

But strawberries—almost any berries for that matter—are a terrible thing to spend your money on in the chilly, slushy month of February. Strawberries are in season for only a handful of weeks, none of which overlap with Valentine’s Day in the US. In most states, their season is in the spring, with some warmer climates (like in Arizona and Florida) kicking off at the end of winter. For most of us, February strawberries will be stark white at the core and flown in from far away places.

Instead, lean into evergreen products like jam or ice cream, which maintain their flavor no matter the season. And to really go the extra mile, I give you: Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Cream Puffs. They’re just as swoonable as a chocolate-covered strawberry, and they’ll actually taste like the fruit in question.

You could easily scoop some ice cream in a bowl, top it with strawberry preserves and whipped cream, and call it a day for an on-theme dessert. And it would be delicious, no doubt. But this is Valentine’s Day. It’s worth putting in a little work for whoever it is you’re loving.

Make an adorably small batch of choux—a quickie French pastry dough that’s cooked on the stove before baking in the oven. Then bisect a puff through the middle to reveal its hollowed-out inside. Spread a spoonful of strawberry jam on the bottom, then plop a generous scoop of strawberry ice cream on top. Add a dollop of lightly sweetened whipped cream before capping the whole thing with the top of the bun. Finally, pour on a cascade of chocolate ganache.

This may be more involved than swinging by the mall for a box of pre-dipped berries. But that’s what makes this cream puff so hopelessly romantic, if you ask me.

Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Cream Puffs

Carly Westerfield

Originally Appeared on Bon Appétit

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