Love is in the Air :: Valentines Day Dinner

 

Ahh…Valentines Day…we are all for doing something special, but does it really have to be going out to dinner?  Why not stay in and cook together?!  Whether it’s a group of girlfriends getting together or you and your sweetheart…this meal combo is to die for!

 

Drink


Limoncello Sparkle

 

Limoncello Sparkle

 

What you will need ::

1 ounce limoncello (an Italian lemon liqueur)

1/2 ounce Cointreau

Champagne

Long lemon peel, for garnish

 

Prepartation ::


Combine the limoncello and Cointreau in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake moderately, and strain into a champagne flute. Top with champagne, the garnish with a long lemon peel. ENJOY!

 

First Course

 

Crostini with Prosciutto, Figs and Mint

 




What you will need ::
1 loaf of ciabatta bread, cut into 1/2-inch slices

1 large clove of garlic, peeled and cut in half

Good-quality extra virgin olive oil

6 large ripe figs

12 slices of prosciutto

Small bunch of fresh mint

Extra virgin olive oil

Balsamic vinegar

Freshly ground black pepper

 

Preparation ::

Toast your slices of ciabatta. While they’re still hot, rub them gently with the cut side of the garlic and drizzle with good-quality extra virgin olive oil.

 

Tear the figs in half, then drape a piece of prosciutto over each of your hot crostini and squash a piece of a fig on top. Finish with mint leaves and serve drizzled with a little extra virgin olive oil, a drop of balsamic vinegar, and some freshly ground black pepper.

 

 

Main Course

 

Mussels, Clams & Shrimp in Spicy Broth

 

Picture of Mussels, Clams and Shrimp in Spicy Broth Recipe

 

What you will need ::


1/4 cup olive oil

garlic cloves, minced

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

1 cup dry white wine

1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes

24 small Littleneck clams (about 2 1/2 pounds total), scrubbed

24 mussels (about 1 1/2 pounds total), debearded

20 large shrimp (about 1 pound), peeled, deveined, butterflied

1/2 cup torn fresh basil leaves

Warm crusty bread

 

Preparation ::

Heat the oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic,bay leaf, and crushed red pepper. Saute until the garlic is tender, about 1 minute. Add the wine and bring to a boil. Add the tomatoes. Bring to a simmer. Simmer until the tomatoes begin to break down and the flavors blend, about 5 minutes. Stir in the clams. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the mussels. Cover and cook until the clams and mussels open, about 5 minutes longer.


Using a tongs, transfer the opened shellfish to serving bowls (discard any shellfish that do not open). Add the shrimp and basil to the simmering tomato broth. Simmer until the shrimp are just cooked through, about 1 1/2 minutes. Divide the shrimp and tomato broth among the bowls. Serve with the warm bread.

 

 

Dessert

 

Chocolate Bread Pudding with Walnuts and Chocolate Chips


Chocolate Bread Pudding with Walnuts and Chocolate Chips

 

 

What you will need ::


4 cups 1-inch cubes egg bread with crust (about 6 ounces)

1 1/4 cups semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips, divided

1/2 cup walnuts, toasted, broken into 1/2-inch pieces

1 cup heavy whipping cream, divided

1 cup half and half, divided

5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

4 large eggs

1 large egg yolk

1/2 cup sugar

Lightly sweetened whipped cream

 

Preparation ::


Toss bread cubes, 1/2 cup chocolate chips, and toasted walnuts in large bowl to blend.

 

Whisk 1/2 cup cream, 1/2 cup half and half, and cocoa in heavy medium saucepan to blend. Add remaining 3/4 cup chocolate chips; stir over low heat until melted and smooth. Gradually whisk in remaining 1/2 cup cream and 1/2 cup half and half. Whisk eggs, egg yolk, and sugar in medium bowl to blend. Whisk in chocolate-cream mixture. Stir into bread mixture. Let stand 1 hour for bread to absorb some of custard.

 

Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter six (1- to 1 1/4-cup) ramekins. Divide pudding mixture among ramekins. Bake puddings until set in centers, about 40 minutes.

 

Top warm puddings with whipped cream and serve.

 

 

Enjoy!!!

 

 


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