I love cooking, I find it to be quite therapeutic and a great way for my husband and I to catch up on our day. I have always preferred having a romantic night in over going out on Valentine’s Day. Don’t get me wrong I still like getting dressed up and doing the “girly thing”, but I don’t miss the set menus, prices and crowds. I would rather go out a few days after the holiday where we can really enjoy eachother, I think that part of me came with being a mom. I love being able to celebrate the holiday with my daughter as well.
Following is the dinner and dessert we made last night for Valentine’s Day. Both dishes are mouth wateringly delicious and so incredibly simple at the same time. There were supposed to be potatoes as well but we will not talk about what happened to those. My intention all along when I created this blog was to share recipes here and there, but hesitated if that would be of interest, so please let me know if you enjoy this segue from the norm.
Grilled Lamb Chops with Pomegranate Port Reduction
Very slight variation from this recipe here.
1 lemon (zested and juiced) 2 tablespoons fresh oregano (chopped)
5 gloves garlic (minced) Salt and black pepper (to personal taste)
8 lamb chops 1/2 cup fresh pomegranate juice
1 cup port wine 4 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
Whisk together the lemon zest and juice, oregano, garlic, salt, and black pepper in a bowl; pour into a resealable plastic bag. Add the lamb chops, coat with the marinade, squeeze out excess air, and seal the bag. Set aside to marinate.
If you have a grill: Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat, and lightly oil the grate.
Our condos do not allow grills so we had to use a grill pan over medium-high heat.
Bring the pomegranate juice and port wine to a simmer in a small saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, and continue simmering until the liquid has reduced to half of its original volume, about 45 minutes. Stir in the pomegranate seeds and set aside.
Remove the lamb from the marinade, and shake off excess. Discard the remaining marinade. Cook the chops on the preheated grill until they start to firm, and are reddish-pink and juicy in the center, about 2 1/2 – 3 minutes per side for medium rare. Serve the chops drizzled with the pomegranate-port reduction.
Chocolate Cups with Vanilla Bean Cream and Fruit
A friend sent me this recipe and I am unsure where she originally came across it. Again a slight variation from the original recipe I was sent.
1 1/3 cup heavy cream 4 tablespoons sugar
1 full vanilla bean (seeded) 1 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
Raspberries and blueberries (or any fruit of choice)
Cover serving tray or plate with saran wrap. Blow up balloons to the same size.
Melt 1 cup chocolate using a double boil. Whisking the entire time to prevent burning.
Remove chocolate from heat and temper in the remaining 1/3 cup of chocolate.
Dip the bottom 1/3 portion of your balloons in the hot chocolate and press firmly on saran wrap for about 3 seconds. Place your bowls in the fridge for about 30 minutes to harden the chocolate. Once firm, with scissors, cut the top portion of the balloon. Do not attempt to pull the balloon out of the cups, they will deflate completely on their own within a few minutes and seperate from the chocolate.
Whisk together your heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla bean until it forms a thick cream.
Pipe the cream into your chocolate cups. Garnish with fruit of choice. For more bitter fruits such as blueberries I like to sprinkle with a little bit of powdered sugar.
Both dishes go perfectly with a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon.