Effortless Valentine’s Day Feast for Two | The Daily Dish

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Effortless Valentine’s Day Feast for Two

No Comments | Written on February 7, 2012 at 5:00 am , by

You don’t need to be a Michelin star chef to create a memorable meal for two this Valentine’s Day.  Something as simple as a warm winter salad, a hearty bowl of soup, and a decadent dessert can earn you big points in the love department.  In the end, when something comes from the heart it doesn’t matter how much money you spend or how many hours you slaved over a hot stove.

Trust me, this meal couldn’t be easier.  Anyone can make a salad, right?  The soup is a snap with the help of Bertolli, and I have a video demo to coach you through the dessert.  Come on, show that special someone how much you care….

Sauteed fennel and red onion is tossed with spinach and radicchio and topped with toasted pine nuts and shaved Parmesan.   This warm salad is a great way to start the meal and a wonderful way to warm the heart of your Valentine!

Warm Italian Salad with Fennel and Toasted Pine Nuts  (click here to view and print recipe)

9 cups loosely packed baby spinach

3 cups bite-sized pieces radicchio (about 1 head)

3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 red onion, halved and sliced thin

1 medium fennel bulb, sliced thin

1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste

3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1/3 cup toasted pine nuts

Garnish:  shaved Parmesan pieces

Toss spinach and radicchio together in a large salad bowl; set aside.  Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add onion, fennel, and salt.  Cook, stirring frequently, until vegetables are softened and browned, about 5-6 minutes.  Stir in vinegar and freshly ground black pepper and cook about 30 seconds until slightly syrupy.  Scrape fennel mixture into the bowl with salad greens.  Add pine nuts and toss until greens wilt slightly, about 1 minute.  Serve immediately topped with Parmesan shavings.

Listen up, this is where the menu get really easy…

For your main course, why not serve one of the Bertolli Frozen Meal Soups!  Their fresh tasting, hearty meal soups are available in the freezer aisle and ready to enjoy in minutes.  These soups for two are so effortless to prepare, you can spend more time wooing your Valentine!  I think the Tuscan-Style Beef and Vegetables tastes great in this menu, but you can check out the four different varieties and select your favorite.

(Find out where you can buy the Bertolli Frozen Meal Soups in your area, click here.)

Plus, while you share a bowl of soup with your love, you also have the opportunity to spread the love to others.

Bertolli is sponsoring the “Ladles of Love” campaign, and will donate 400,000 meals (that’s $50,000!) to Feeding America.  You can learn more and show your support by visiting the Bertolli Facebook page and click on the Ladles of Love tab.

A romantic meal for two isn’t complete without a rich, delectable dessert.  This recipe is fantastic because it makes two individual-sized molten chocolate cakes.  Finish it off with a light dusting of powdered sugar, a few berries and a mint spring.  Nervous about channeling your inner pastry chef?   No worries, I have a how-to demo below to take you through the recipe.   

Molten Chocolate Cakes For Two  (click here to view and print recipe) 

4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour

Garnish:

Powdered sugar
Fresh raspberries or thinly sliced strawberries
Granulated sugar

Heat oven to 450 degrees.  Place 2 cupcake liners into a standard-size muffin tin and spray liners with nonstick spray; set aside.  In a microwave safe dish or measuring up, place butter and chocolate chips.  Heat on high for 45 seconds.  Remove and stir vigorously to completely melt chips; return to microwave for a few seconds if they aren’t melting.  Stir vanilla into chocolate mixture; set aside.  In a medium mixing bowl place egg, 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar, and a pinch of salt.  Mix with a hand mixer or whisk for 2 minutes or until sugar is dissolved.  Stir in melted chocolate mixture and blend.  Stir in flour just until blended.  Using a small rubber scraper or spoon, carefully pour mixture into each cup.  The cups will be filled right to the very top.  Bake for 10 minutes or until the edges are firm but the middle is still soft.  Remove from oven and place on wire rack; cool cakes in the pan for 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes, carefully lift cakes out of muffin tin and slowly peel away the cake liner, being careful not to squeeze the cakes.  Gently flip cakes out onto small serving dishes and slowly peel away the liner.  Dust the cakes with powdered sugar.   Roll the raspberries or strawberries in a little granulated sugar to lightly coat.  Place the sugared berries on the top of the cakes plus scatter some around the plate.  Serve warm.

Step-by-Step Video Demo: 

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