Here is a shopping list for everything you need to make all of the dishes.
This martini is a perfect mixture of tangy and sweet, with the aroma of elderflower softening your senses.
2 oz raspberry vodka (such as Stoli Razberi)
1 oz elderflower liquor (such as St. Germain)
1/2 oz cranberry juice (100% cranberry juice works best)
1 mint leaf (or romantic garnish of your choice)
Bring all ingredients to your local bartender. Have him or her mix the drinks for you. Bring them back home without spilling.
Just kidding! You can do it! If you don't have a martini shaker, hang on a minute and let me figure out what you should do. If you do have a martini shaker, here is what you should do.
1. Put a handful of ice in your shaker. Measure out the liquid ingredients. If you do not have something to measure an ounce, I am about to tell you something you will remember for the rest of your life. As long as you bookmark this page. One fluid ounce equals two tablespoons.
2. Throw the raspberries in the shaker.
3. Put the top on tight!
4. Shake for as long as it takes you to sing Free Bird to your loved one.
5. Repeat Step 4.
6. Repeat Step 5.
7. Take off the very top part of the martini shaker (not the whole top, just the cap part) and pour it into a glass.
8. Garnish it with the mint-leaf-or-garnish-of-your-choosing.
9. This one is yours. Now make a better one for your loved one.
Okay, those of you who don't have a martini shaker.... I heard they have some great Valentine's Day beers out there!
A tip: the Oysters Rockefeller takes a bit. I would recommend reading the recipe ahead of time and planning accordingly. Planning accordingly could involve starting the oysters and making the martinis halfway throughout.
4 slices of bacon (you love it already, don't you)
1.5 cups of butter (3 sticks)*
8 cups spinach, stems removed
2 cups watercress, trimmed and washed
4 cloves of garlic, smashed
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 lemon, sliced
15 medium oysters, shucked (keep shells)
Lettuce or any kind of greens
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line large rimmed baking sheet with wax paper.
Cut each slice of bacon into four pieces. Put the pieces on a bacon sheet and put them on the wax paper-ed baking sheet, and then put another piece of wax paper on top. Like a bacon sandwich on wax paper bread. Now put the baking sheet in the oven for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, put them on a paper towel and pat dry.
Take this situation off the stove, put it in a strainer, and take the clove of garlic out and throw it away. Press the greens into the strainer so some of the liquid comes out. This will make for more intact oyster topping later.
Without cleaning the pan, put the rest of the spinach and watercress in there. When everything is cooked, finely chop the greens and cover with foil to keep them warm.
Take the rest of the butter and cut it into small squares. Grab a medium saucepan, turn it on, and throw in 3 tablespoons of water. As soon as it simmers, reduce the heat to low and whisk in the rest of the butter, one piece at a time, until melted. Remove from the heat, throw in the lemon slices, cover, and then go do something else for 15 minutes. The lemons and butter need some alone time.
After 15 minutes, remove the lemon slices from the sauce and stir in the rest of the salt and pepper (1 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper). Place the sauce over medium heat and bring it to a simmer. If the liquid seems low, add a little water. Add 5 oysters and cook until the edges begin to curl a little. As soon as they do, put the oysters in a small bowl and cover them with foil. Repeat with the remaining oysters. When you've cooked all the oysters, keep the butter.
Now grab a plate and arrange the lettuce or greens. Put the oysters back in their shells (just the bottom half), place them on top of the lettuce, spoon the butter sauce on top, and garnish with the bacon. Serve immediately.
This is a tasty, spicy dish that is sure to impress. The spiciness will pick you up after the oysters in which you just indulged. It is easy to make, delicious to eat, and sure to impress.
Prepare some rice to serve alongside the shrimp to create a perfect dish!
2 tablespoons olive oil
12 large shrimp, peeled, deveined
1 red bell pepper, seeded, cut into thin strips
1 fresh Anaheim chile, seeded, cut into thin strips
1/2 jalapeño chile, cut lengthwise, seeded, cut into thin strips
1/2 small onion, cut into thin strips (about 1 cup)
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon cumin
Salt and pepper
1. Heat the olive oil on high in a large skillet. When hot but not smoking, add the shrimp and stir for three minutes.
2. Add the red pepper, the chiles and the onions and cook until the shrimp are cooked through. This should take about four minutes or so and the peppers should be slightly charred.
3. Add the garlic, the cumin, and salt and pepper to taste.
4. Remove from the heat and serve with the rice.
Flourless Chocolate Cake
This cake is easy, delicious, and the perfect ending to a delicious meal. The raspberries are a great complement to the rich chocolate. (and unless you drank 7 martinis each, you should have some raspberries left over for the garnish of this cake. and if you did drink all the raspberries, you won't care about a garnish for the cake!)
4 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened)
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder plus additional for sprinkling 1. Preheat oven to 375°F and butter an 8-inch round baking pan. Line bottom with a round piece of wax paper and then butter the paper.
2. Chop the chocolate into small pieces. In a double boiler or metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water melt the chocolate with the butter, stirring until it is all smooth.
3. Remove top of double boiler or bowl from heat and whisk the sugar in.
4. Add the eggs and whisk well.
5. Sift 1/2 cup cocoa powder over chocolate mixture and whisk until just combined.
6. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 25 minutes, or until the top has formed a thin crust.
7. Cool cake in pan on a rack 5 minutes and then move to a serving plate.
8. Dust cake with additional cocoa powder and garnish with the raspberries.
Have a very happy Valentine's Day!