Valentine’s Day Recipes

Valentine’s Day Recipes

Valentine’s Day is upon us. I hope that you are ready for that special dinner.   If not, don’t worry, we have compiled a list of our most popular Valentine’s Day recipes.  Start it off your night with a nice refreshing cocktail!  Then select an entree and a couple of sides.  Finally pick one of our Valentine’s Day Desserts. You can even pick two.  Try our sinful chocolate souffles and strawberry poppers.  Hope you have a great date night.

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Valentines Day Pressed Cookies

Valentines Day Pressed Cookies

My family loves to eat cookies.  Some of our favorite cookies are pressed cookies.  They are easy to make, equal in size and consistent in quality.  They are basically the easiest cookies in the world to cook the same repeatedly.  In order to make these we had to pick up a cookie press.  After looking at  various reviews online we decided to pick up an Oxo Cookie Press.  Next since it is Valentines day we decided to make some Valentines cookies.  This was easy as a few of the various cookie cutters included with the Oxo cookie press were hearts, flowers and teddy bears.  Perfect for Valentines Day!  The go to dough for these cookies, is Dana’s Mother’s recipe.  Thanks for letting me reprint this Jane.

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Haricots Verts

Haricots Verts

There is no better side dish than a nice plate of green beans.  I wanted to fancy things up so this is my version of Haricots Verts, AKA French style green beans.  These are tasty as they are cooked with garlic and shallot.  They also have a nice little bite from from red wine vinegar.  Although this is not traditional it is my take and they are super tasty.

Haricots Verts

  • 1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed
  • 3 tbs butter
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 large shallots, diced
  • 2 tbs red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme, or 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Clean and trim the green beans.

Trimmed and rinsed

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Then gently lower the green beans and cook for 5 minutes.

Quickly blanch the green beans

Remove the green beans from the water and place immediately into ice water.  This will stop the cooking and also keep them nice and green.  Brown green beans are sad green beans :(.

Chill to preserve the color and flavor

In a large saute pan, heat the butter over medium heat and quickly cook the garlic for a minute.  Then add the shallots and thyme.  Cook until the shallots are translucent.

Quickly cook

Add the green beans and continue cooking for a couple of minutes.  Make sure the shallots, green beans and thyme are thoroughly mixed.  De glaze the pan with the red wine vinegar.  Season with salt and pepper and serve.

The beans up close

These beans are quick and easy.  Plus they are full of flavor.

Money shot of Haricots Verts

A perfect side for that special meal.  These beans were delicious.  They barely made it to the table.

Creamed Spinach for Two

Creamed Spinach for Two

We are closely approaching Valentines Day.  With the state of the economy this year seems like a year for staying in and cooking.  So I have come up with a few recipes for two that will work perfect on your special night.  I am starting with the sides as they are my favorite part of the dinner.  Recently Dana and I went out to a nice steakhouse and had some less than spectacular creamed spinach.  So I decided this would be the first recipe I tackle.

Creamed Spinach for Two – (Adapted from Emeril)

  • 12 ounces fresh spinach, washed
  • 1 tb unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped shallots, one large shallot chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg, freshly grated if possible
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream

Wash the spinach and then remove any large stems.

Fresh Spinach

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.  Add the spinach and cook for 2 minutes.  Remember you will need a large pot as uncooked spinach takes up a lot of room.

Blanche the spinach

Here is an after picture.  You want to blanch the spinach.

Cooked spinach

Empty the spinach into a fine strainer and squeeze out as much water as you can.  I find that a back of a wooden spoon can do wonders in this step.  Then chop the spinach into smaller pieces.

Drain the spinach

Melt the butter in medium saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, until soft and fragrant, about 2 minutes.

Cook the aromatics

Then add the spinach.  Cook until you see some liquid starting to be released from the spinach.  You will notice that the mixture will become a little easier to stir.  Then add the cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg, and cook until the cream is reduced by half, about 4 minutes.

Add the cream and reduce

Remove and serve with your main dish.

Creamed Spinach

This creamed spinach was awesome.  As good or better than any I have ever eaten.  Cook this for your special someone and it will be a good night.