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Valentine's Day Dinner For 2

Guest Author - Amelia Johnson

Tired of fighting the crowd at your favorite restaurant on Valentines day? This year avoid the masses and whip up a romantic Valentine's dinner for two in the comfort of your own home. Read on for ideas and recipes to make the most of your romantic day.

The setup:

-If possible, dim the lights in the house. Light vanilla candles or (another muted scent)in all areas of the house that will be used. Group multi-size candles together to add visual interest to tables and shelving spaces.
-Place roses in several mini-vases around the room, and on the dining table, grouped together to bring on the romance. Stick with red for a romantic monochrome palate or multi-color for a more fun feel.
-Set the table with red or white plates, as well as silverware and glasses. Set up should be determined depending on how formal the meal is going to be.

The Menu:

-Serve appetizers, soup/salad course, main course, and dessert if the meal is going to be formal.

Sample Menu:

Appetizer: Grilled Jalapeno Poppers

Soup: Broccoli & Cheddar soup
Salad: Strawberry & Spinach salad

Main Course: Braised Beef Pot Roast with Twice Baked potatoes, baby corn, and dinner rolls

Dessert: Chocolate Mousse

Recipe ideas:

Braised Beef Pot Roast:
8 ounces sirloin, 1" thick
3/4 teaspoon olive oil, or canola oil
1/2 onion, cut in eighths
2 carrots, cut in 2" pieces
1 stalk celery, cut in 2" pieces
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, or 1 cup red wine
3/8 cup beef broth
1/4 bay leaf
1/4 bay leaf
1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
1/16 teaspoon salt and black pepper, freshly ground

Directions:

- Trim fat from beef. Cut a length of kitchen string about four times the length of the roast and wrap once around the length, then around width several times, tying where it comes together.

- In a large Dutch oven, heat oil over moderately high heat. Brown beef on all sides. Transfer to a plate.

-Add vegetables to pan and saute for about 7 minutes or until browned and slightly softened. Transfer to a plate.

-Return beef to pan. Add wine vinegar, stock, herbs, salt and pepper. Stir to blend. Cover and simmer gently about two hours, turning meat every 30 minutes.

-Return vegetables to pot, cover, and simmer about 15 m inutes, or until beef is very tender.

-Discard bay leaf. Slice meat and arrange on platter surrounded by vegetables. Serve with pot juices.


Chocolate Mousse


Ingredients

8 ounces chocolate chips
6 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups whipping cream
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar

Directions:

-Melt chocolate and water in saucepan.
-Whisk in the vanilla.
-Allow to cool.
-Whip the cream.
-Add the confectioner's sugar.
-On low beater, blend in the chocolate.
-Scoop the Chocolate Mousse into a clear, glass bowl.
-Garnish with grated chocolate or some of the chocolate from the pan drizzled on top.

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Content copyright © 2014 by Amelia Johnson. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Amelia Johnson. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Shalia Hayes for details.

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