For the past few years of marriage, my husfriend has gotten quite creative with his romantic gestures. Last year he found a discarded bathtub on the street which seemed to be 'new', so he carried it up to our apartment and put it on the terrace then cleaned / disinfected it. He then bought a few meters of hose so he could run water out from our kitchen to the bath and covered any holes up with electrical tape to lock the water in. When I returned home on Valentine's day eve I found a grinning husfriend and a bubble bath under the stars waiting for me. 

This year we'll be in Texas at my sister-in-law's house so grand gestures like last year's star-studded bath won't necessarily be on offer, so I decided to gear down the game and hit the heart through the tummy by adapting one of my husfriend's childhood favourites to match our mouth's morals, and make it all romantic.

VEGAN GLUTEN-FREE VALENTINE'S POP TARTS 
INGREDIENTS 
[for the pastry]
1/2 cup (60g) gluten-free plain flour (you may also use regular plain flour for a non-GF version)
- 1/2 cup (60g) buckwheat flour (you may also use whole wheat flour for a non-GF version)
- 1/2 tsp baking powder 
- 3 tbsp milk of your choice (I used almond milk) 
- 3 tbsp water
- 1 tbsp oil
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp maple syrup
[for the nutella] 
1 cup of raw hazelnuts
- 4 tbsp of fair trade organic raw cacao powder
- 6 tbsp of maple syrup
- 2 tbsp of agave syrup
- ¼ cup of hazelnut milk
[ jam ]
- I used an organic artisan made strawberry jam I bought at a market in England, but any jam will do!
[garnish]
- In season berries
- a few teaspoons of fair trade organic sugar

DIRECTIONS
1. Follow the directions to make the sweet version of Southern In Law's Gluten-Free Vegan Pie Crust (recipe here). If your intended valentine's pop tart eater isn't in need of gluten-free nor vegan pastry, you can use store bought or any sweet pastry 
2. Follow the directions to make my Vegan, Palm-oil free Nutella (recipe here)
3. Rool out the pie crust until thin and cut rectangles out of it so you have an even number of rectangles 
4. Spread a layer of the vegan palm-oil free Nutella, layer of jam and some smashed up berries on one-half of each of the rectangles, leaving a 1/2 an inch frame around the edges
5. Cover with a second rectangle
6. Use a fork to seal the edges 
7. With some excess pie crust mixture cut out a heart 
8. Brush the pop tart with a super light layer of coconut oil and sprinkle sugar on it
9. Place the heart cut out on pop tart
10. Bake for 10-15 minutes then move to a cooling rack before serving.
PHOTOS: Shane Woodward
*adapted from The Novice Chef