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Valentine's Day Menu

Valentine's Day Feast
By , Contributor
February 5, 2014

Whether you hate it or love it, Valentine’s Day is a good excuse to cook a special meal, eat chocolate and show off your culinary expertise. So whether you’re trying to impress a prospective love interest, score points with your spouse or just kick back and have a good time with friends, our menu – with plenty of booze and sugar – will fit the bill.

Mexican Hot Chocolate

Ingredients

4 cups whole milk
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ancho chili powder
8 oz bittersweet chocolate
4 oz chocolate liqueur
2 cinnamon sticks, for garnish

Directions

If only all romances were as sweet and steamy as this kicked-up cocoa. Add a scoop of whipped cream for an additional indulgent layer.

Yield: 4 servings

Add milk, cocoa powder, sugar, cinnamon and chili powder to a saucepan on high heat. Whisk constantly until it reaches a full boil. Shut off heat and add chocolate. Whisk until chocolate has melted completely. Add liqueur and serve.

Oysters with Champagne and Chili Mignonette

Ingredients

3 tbsp shallots, minced
1 tbsp jalapeño, seeded and chopped fine
4 tbsp Champagne vinegar, chilled
2 tbsp Champagne or other sparkling wine, chilled
15 oysters, such as Moonstone, Matunuck, Island Creek, Wellfleet or Blue Point, scrubbed well

Directions

Who needs flowers and chocolates when oysters and champagne are in the mix? A dozen bivalves in lieu of a dozen roses sounds good to us.

Yield: 15 oysters

In a small bowl, add shallots, jalapeño, vinegar and champagne. Stir well.

Shuck oysters and remove any excess bits of shell or sand that line rim of oyster. Place on ice and serve immediately with mignonette.

 

Lobster Tails with Tarragon Butter

Ingredients

1 cup white wine
1 quart fish stock
1 quart water
1 lemon, quartered
2 (16 oz) lobster tails
3 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 cup shallots, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tbsp tarragon, chopped fine
2 tbsp chives, chopped fine
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

Directions

Nothing says special occasion better than lobster. And a blue box from Tiffany’s. If jewelry isn’t in the picture (or even if it is), pair the dish with a few glasses of Chenin Blanc or Viognier.

Yield: 2 servings

Add white wine, stock, water and lemon to a saucepan on high heat. When the liquid is boiling, add the lobster. Cook for 5 minutes, then remove lobsters and set aside, reserving cooking liquid. When lobsters are cool enough to handle, separate the meat from the shell. Cut into bite-sized pieces.

Add butter to a sauté pan on medium heat. When it has melted, add shallots. Sauté 3 minutes, then add garlic. Cook another minute. Add 1/4 cup reserved cooking liquid. Add lobster, tarragon and chives, and cook until lobster is warm.

Chocolate and Rum Fondue

Ingredients

6 oz bittersweet chocolate
4 oz semisweet chocolate
1/4 cup rum
1 cup heavy cream

Directions

It would be remiss to label chocolate fondue a dessert cliché and ignore its charming goodness. Embrace the old-school, dust off the fondue pot and get ready for a sugar high. Pound cake, raspberries and strawberries are perfect dipping implements.

Yield: 4 servings

Place a medium metal bowl over a pot of simmering water, being sure bottom of bowl does not touch water. Add bittersweet and semisweet chocolate to bowl. Add cream. Stir occasionally until chocolate has melted and entire mixture is warmed through. Transfer mixture to a fondue pot kept on a low flame, and serve.

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