Sunday, February 5, 2017

#ABA Valentine Blog Hop - A Simple Romantic Dinner

A list of all the blogs in the hop and a Rafflecopter of prizes follows at the end of this post!

Valentine's Day is definitely a time for love, but it's also a time to eat a romantic dinner with your sweetie!

I love going out with my husband for a nice meal at a great restaurant on Valentine's Day. But sometimes it's fun (and more economical) to stay home and cook together. Here's an easy dinner just special enough for Valentine's Day.

Here's the menu for a Valentines Dinner for Two:

Salad greens with apple, walnuts and brie
Sumptuous Seafood for Two
White or Brown Rice (optional)
Roasted Asparagus
Deluxe Brownie Dessert

Start with a crispy salad.

Salad Greens with Apples, Walnuts and Brie 
Prep time: about 10 minutes

1 tbsp. cider vinegar
3 tbsp. (45 ml) extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. (5 ml) Dijon mustard
2 tsp. (10 ml) honey, or to taste
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
4 cups (1 litre) baby salad greens, washed and dried
12 to 16 thin, half slices of red apple
2 to 3 tbsp. (30-45 ml) walnut pieces
75 g brie cheese, cut into small cubes

Combine the first 4 ingredients in a small bowl. Season the dressing with salt and pepper. Divide and mound the salad greens on two salad plates. Top with the apples, nuts and cheese. Drizzle with salad dressing and serve.
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Next, the main event!

Sumptuous Seafood for Two
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cooking time:11-13 minutes

1/4 cup (60 ml) white wine
2 tbsp. (30 ml) butter
1 tbsp. (15 ml) fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
pinches of paprika, cayenne pepper and dried tarragon
1 - 3 1/2 to 4 oz. (100-115 g) lobster tail, thawed if frozen, split in half lengthwise
4 large scallops
4 large shrimp or prawns, peeled with tail portion intact
1 6 oz. (170 g) fish filet, such as halibut, cod or salmon
1 tbsp. (15 ml) chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. (230 C) Place the butter, wine, lemon juice, garlic, spices and tarragon in a small pot. Set over medium heat and heat 3 to 4 minutes, just until the butter is melted. Remove pot from the heat.

Use a paper towel to pat and remove any excess moisture on the seafood. Arrange seafood, setting the lobster cut side up, in a single layer in shallow-sided baking dish. Drizzle seafood with wine/butter mixture. Bake 11 to 13 minutes, or until the shellfish and fish are just cooked. When cooked, fish and shellfish should feel slightly firm, not hard (overcooked) and not soft (not cooked through). Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Roasted Asparagus
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 12 - 14 minutes. The asparagus has the same cooking time and temperature as the seafood, so they can go into the oven together.

12 - 14 asparagus spears, stems trimmed
1 1/2 tbsp. (22 ml) olive oil
1 tbsp.  (15 ml) balsamic vinegar
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (230 C). Bring a wide skillet of water to a boil. Add the asparagus and cook 2 minutes, until bright green, but not quite cooked through. Drain well, cool asparagus in cold water, and then drain well again. Place the asparagus in a casserole dish just large enough to hold it in a single layer. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar; season with salt and pepper. Roast 11 to 13 minutes, or until hot and delicious.

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And for dessert, let's go real easy with ready made store bought brownies. Or make your own, if you're so inclined.

Deluxe Brownie Dessert
Prep time: 10 minutes

8 small to medium fresh strawberries
1 tbsp. (15 ml) icing sugar
1/2 oz. (150 ml) orange liqueur, or to taste (optional)
2 squares or wedges of brownie
2 scoops mango or other fruit sorbet

Place strawberries and icing sugar in a small bowl and toss to combine. Flavour with orange liqueur, if using. Divide and spread on two dessert plates. Set a brownie on each plate. Set a scoop of sorbet on top of each brownie. You can garnish with a sprig of mint if you like. Enjoy!
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  1. What a great menu. Thaks for posting. I loved your book.

  2. OH, wow, such a wonderful meal, and one my husband and I would both love. Thanks for sharing. I can't wait to try this, especially the seafood delight!

    1. For me, the best part about this menu is that it's easy to make, and pretty quick. You don't have to spend hours cooking. More time for...other things!

  3. Just hopping over from my blog to say hi. Thanks for the Valentine's Day menu. Sounds great. :)

  4. What a wonderful meal. I remember one Valentine's Day my husband made me shrimp alfredo, truly a labor of love since he doesn't like cheese sauce or shrimp! It was delish.

    1. That's true love for you! Thanks for stopping by DeeDee.

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