Love is in the air - check out these Valentine's treats

Nicky's Valentine Box.

Nicky's Valentine Box. Picture: Peter Collison. - Credit: Peter Collison

Spring is around the corner and Valentine’s Day is nearly here. If you would like a delicious treat for yourself or a loved one, I have a couple of ideas for you. 

Baked by Nicky (aka Nicky Collison) has created a really pretty box of Valentine-themed goodies, including iced biscuits, raspberry and white chocolate cupcakes and cake pops.

I love that she will personalise the biscuits for you – perhaps intertwined initials? Or your dog’s name, if you love it more?

Nicky also does a very pretty cream tea for two, including freshly baked scones with clotted cream, homemade lemon curd or jam, lemon drizzle cupcakes, triple chocolate brownies and raspberry frangipane tarts, which she can also do for valentine’s day. You can also get sandwiches if you like. 

Nicky started her business at home in St Albans last May, having baked for family and friends for many years. Brownies and cupcakes have been extremely popular, with boxes of cakes being delivered to clinics, schools and nurseries as thank yous.

Nicky Collison

Nicky Collison. Picture: Karen Snook - Credit: Karen Snook

Her bestsellers are the brownies and blondies, which she also sends out by post! Ideal if you want to send a gift to someone stuck at home. You can also order special occasion cakes such as birthday and wedding cakes and Nicky is very happy to discuss whatever you need, and can make up selection boxes to your own spec.

Last year Nicky sold her bakes at various St Albans markets, including the Farr Brew Christmas Fair, and is looking forward to doing more markets this year so look out for her in the spring. 

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Nicky is taking orders for the valentine boxes until the 1 February or until she sells out. Email her on Prices are around £13.50. Delivery is free if the order is over £25 or just £2 in St Albans.  

Katy’s Gift Boxes are doing Valentine-themed gift boxes, including very pretty iced heart-shaped biscuits made by I am the Disco Cake Queen, beetroot and rhubarb chutney, Emmy’s Brigadeiros, strawberry white chocolate from I am Cocoa, as well as Dizzy Bee granola for a romantic breakfast in bed.

Katy is taking orders until February 10, to ensure delivery in time for the big day. ‘The Cute One’ is 29.99 and includes handmade soap and a glass decoration. Larger boxes also contain red dried flower bouquets, spicy sauce, chilli oil, truffles, candles and books. Have a look at the website for all the info on the individual suppliers, all of whom are from Hertfordshire. It’s a great way to support local, without leaving your home. The prices include delivery within Herts. 

If cask ale is more your thing, Save St Albans Pubs has organised a way to get draft beer to their customers while they are banned from selling from the pubs. This is a brilliant idea, which should help cut down on some of the waste (although will still fall a long way short).

Cellar Door Wines, on the London Road, has allowed them to set up a stall outside for call and collect and its open 2-6pm, Thursday to Saturday. Ring or text 07510463028 to arrange a collection time. They ask that you wear a mask (even though it is outside) and its strictly one customer at a time at the stall.

The beers on sale include: Bingham’s, Mystic Endeavor Pale Ale, Farr Brew Best, St Austell Tribute and also proper draft Guinness. They also have a range of ciders including Gwynt y Ddraig. Follow them on Insta and Facebook for beer updates.