Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine’s Day Crafts For Kids - Italian Style

Saint Valentine was born in Rome, so it’s only fitting that Italians have their own special way of celebrating Valentine’s Day, and their most popular sweet gift is perfect to make with the kids. Italians are fond of giving “Baci Perugina”, a brand of chocolate-covered hazelnuts, accompanied by a quote from a poem written in four different languages. You can make your own simplified version of this tempting confection at home.

To make chocolate covered hazelnuts, you will need:

3 cups of toasted hazelnuts

1 bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips

Double boiler with water

Melt the chocolate chips in slowly in the double boiler, stirring occasionally. When the chocolate is fully melted, remove from the heat and place hazelnuts into the chocolate a few at a time. Dredge the nuts thoroughly, and then carefully remove with a fork. Place the nuts individually on a cookie tray that has been lined with parchment paper. Keep dredging until all of the nuts are covered in chocolate. Take the tray and place into the refrigerator for approximately 30 minutes, or until the chocolate is completely set.

“Ti Amo” and “Ti voglio bene” both are common ways to say “I love you” in Italy. To complete the Italian tradition, have your child write these expressions, or “Ti voglio tanto bene!”, which means “I love you a lot!”, in a card. If you’re feeling a bit more ambitious, you could try translating a poem or an excerpt from a poem into four different languages using an online translator. Then, take out the paints and crayons and draw popular Italian attractions, like the Leaning Tower of Pisa, a gondola, Trevi Fountain or the Coliseum.

Box up the hazelnuts in pretty gift boxes and give them out to family members on Valentine’s Day with the drawings and cards you made. It’s a great way to express you love, Italian style!

Valentine’s Day Crafts For Kids-Italian Style is a guest post by Rebecca Savastio.

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