Tradition Sparks Joy on Valentine’s Day
Feb 06, 2019 06:14AM
By Lisa Payne
When I was growing up, every Valentine’s Day began with my dad giving my sister and me our own box of surprise filled chocolates. It was our thing and it was tradition. It was something we could count on year after year. Children especially crave tradition, and research shows it helps create feelings of belonging and stability, develops a positive sense of identity, and can help build self-esteem. It certainly helped build all of that in me. To this day I look forward to the rituals that embrace each holiday in our home. They create a feeling of anticipation, excitement, and warmth. If you haven’t already, try creating one of your own this holiday.
I have come up with a few Valentine’s Day traditions for my husband and four children including chocolates and strawberry milk for breakfast (sorry teachers) and packing their lunch with pink and red colored food. A favorite Valentine’s Day ritual that stands out in my children’s minds is the heart shaped pizza that their grandparents bring over for dinner each year. You can purchase one at several pizza chains around town but ours always comes from Papa Murphy’s. It is pure saucy, cheesy heaven. Depending how busy your day will be, you can purchase a heart shaped pizza (Google who makes them) or make one yourself. I have included a recipe for those with a few extra minutes this Valentine’s Day. This one is easy and fun for the kids to help with.
1 tube refrigerated pizza dough
1 cup pizza sauce
1 tbsp olive oil
1-2 tsp garlic salt
1 tbsp cornmeal
2 cups shredded mozzarella
1 ½ cups any toppings you would like
Preheat oven according to dough package. Lay out a piece of parchment paper and sprinkle with cornmeal. Press or roll out dough on parchment paper into a round, square or oval shape. Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough in the shape of a heart. It doesn’t have to be perfect, we call this rustic.
Next brush the pizza dough with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic salt. Place parchment sheet with pizza dough on a cookie sheet or pizza stone. Bake for 8 minutes or until very light brown. Remove from oven.
Top the dough with the sauce (half inch from edges), cheese and toppings. Place back in oven and bake an additional 10-12 minutes or until light brown and bubbly.
Let sit five minutes before cutting. We like to serve with extra sauce for dipping and a sprinkle of Italian seasonings and grated parmesan cheese. If you like spicy, try dipping pizza slices in Frank’s Red Hot sauce, it’s delicious! Enjoy!