Best Crab Cakes Ever

Ideas for Valentine’s Day Dinner

Hey Guys, have you made plans yet for the big day?  No, not the Super Bowl. Valentine’s Day!  How about this: A romantic dinner for two (or more) in your own cozy dining room.  It’s what John and I have been doing for years.

John_Me_Jack

We usually invite over four or five other couples (with kids) and all the guys bring a dish. The guys coordinate the meal so everything goes together.  Last year, it was paella and tapas.  The year before that, it was Beef Wellington and traditional sides.  I’m not sure what the guys will have in store for us this year, but I know it will be good!

Los_Tracy

If you decide to host your own Valentine’s Day dinner, here are some menu ideas:

BEVERAGE IDEAS (for $20 or less)

Riondo Pink Prosecco: It’s pink!  Need I say more?

Lange Pinot Noir 2009One of my favorite pinots.

Coppola Claret: A perfect red wine if there ever was one.

Cupcake Chardonnay: It’s not oaky (thank goodness).

Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc: This is a family favorite. Crisp, light, affordable.

J. Lohr Cabernet: Very nice cab.

Hess Select Cabernet: More chocolatey than most, but I like that sometimes.

APPETIZER IDEAS

Keep ‘em Coming Crab Cakes:  You won’t be disappointed!  Serve with remoulade sauce.

crab_cakes

Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Dip: Serve with pita or raw veggies.  Unique flavor.

RPD_done1

Is-It-Hot-In-Here Stuffed Jalapeños: Sure to please. Makes a lot, so good for a group dinner.

stuffjalapenos2422

MAIN COURSE IDEAS

Pesto & Pancetta Pork Tenderloin: So elegant and surprisingly easy.

PP_13_done2

Fish in Parchment with Pesto and Veggies: Adorable presentation. Light. Lovely flavor.

fish_parchment

Grilled Steaks with Chimichurri: Perfect way to dress up a simple steak.

chimichurri3

Grilled Steaks with Creamy Mustard Sauce: Another perfect way to dress up a simple steak!

Steak1

Pistachio-Crusted Cod: Buttery and lemony with salty pistachios and flaky fish.

12_cod_plate

Old-Fashioned Beef Stew: Serve over extra-wide egg noodles. Top with Parmesan.

Beef_stew

Easy Roasted Chicken: Garlic, lemon, thyme, butter.  Yum.

roast_chicken

SIDE DISH IDEAS

Roasted Beet Salad with Feta and Nuts: Only if your date likes beets. So find out first.

beet_salad

Green Bean Salad: One of my faves.  So colorful.  Use the thin French green beans for best results.

GB_Salad

Steakhouse-Style Creamed Spinach:  John’s favorite.  Rich and delicious.

tg_creamedspinach

Simple Sautéed Mushrooms: Serve over steaks or chops. Hearty and satisfying.

mushrooms_bowl

Sautéed Peas with Shallots and Mint: Yes, it’s a strange combination. Trust me; they’re awesome.

SP_7_peas_done2

Sautéed Squash with Parmesan: Use green and yellow for extra color.

squash

DESSERT IDEAS

Go-To Chocolate Tart: One of the best things you will ever eat.

tart

Red Velvet Cupcakes: Foodiecrush Magazine favorite.  Adorable and delicious.

rv_cupcake1

Strawberry Shortcakes: Made with real butter and fresh strawberries.

strawberry_shortcake

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16 Responses to Ideas for Valentine’s Day Dinner

  1. Lauren DeSantis-Then January 31, 2013 at 12:37 pm #

    Great ideas!

    • Marie H. Saba January 31, 2013 at 9:15 pm #

      Thanks Lauren! So fun to follow you in D.C.!

  2. Suzanne Holt January 31, 2013 at 12:56 pm #

    I think cooking at home is much better than dealing with the restaurant madness on Valentine’s Day. Cooking WITH my husband makes it even better because it gives us time to talk, laugh and bond. Plenty of candles, soft music and a few rose petals make for a very intimate romantic evening rather than the chatter of a full room of people and the clinging of plates and glasses. Just my opinion :)

    • Marie H. Saba January 31, 2013 at 1:40 pm #

      I totally agree! I think we will add candles to the dinner this year — sounds lovely!

  3. Matthew January 31, 2013 at 4:00 pm #

    Can I just show up for the cupcakes!??

  4. Blackbox _cosmeticsd February 4, 2013 at 5:34 pm #

    great dinner thanks for sharing!

    • Marie H. Saba February 10, 2013 at 6:24 pm #

      Sure! It’s always a pleasure to share good food.

  5. Ashley February 10, 2013 at 8:09 am #

    Do you have the recipe for the pesto & panchetta pork tenderloin? It looks amazing!!!

    • Marie H. Saba February 10, 2013 at 10:59 am #

      Hi Ashley! Thanks for the request! I just posted the recipe for you a few minutes ago. Let me know how you like it! xx

      • Ashley February 10, 2013 at 11:04 pm #

        Thank you! Looks delicious & I can’t wait to try it :) I’ll let you know

  6. Ashley February 14, 2013 at 10:19 pm #

    Tonight I made the pork & squash and zucchini. It was all absolutely delicious!!! My husband loved it and we’re adding it to our list of favorites

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