February 12, 2021 at 10:56 a.m.

Romantic meal at home

Romantic meal at home
Romantic meal at home

Today it’s all about romantic meals for you and your sweetheart.  These recipes are bound to put you in the mood....to eat!

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SWEETHEART CHICKEN
1/2 c. balsamic vinegar
1/4 c. sugar
2 tbsp. honey
11 oz. boneless skinless chicken breast
2 tsp. Italian seasoning, divided
1 tsp. garlic powder
kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
4 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
12 oz. cooked short pasta noodles (such as penne or spiral)
1 c. cherry tomatoes, halved
2 oz. fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
Make balsamic glaze: In a medium saucepan, add balsamic vinegar, sugar, and honey and whisk to combine. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat and simmer until reduced by half. Remove from heat and transfer to a heatproof bowl to cool.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Add chicken and cook until warm. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Add cooked pasta to skillet and drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Season with remaining 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning and salt and pepper and stir to combine. Stir in tomatoes and cook until pasta is hot throughout and tomatoes are tender, 2 to 4 minutes.

Add chicken and mozzarella, then cover and cook until cheese is melty. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and serve.

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CAESAR SALAD
Croutons
1/2 cup olive oil
6 garlic cloves, smashed
3 cups cubed baguette (from 1 [5-oz.] baguette)
1 oz. parmesan cheese, grated (about ¼ cup)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Salad
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1/4 cup large capers, rinsed and drained, patted dry
2 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
6 anchovy fillets
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1 large egg yolk
3/4 cup pure olive oil
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (about ½ cup), divided
2 romaine lettuce hearts (about 1 lb.), leaves separated
2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, shaved (about ½ cup)

Prepare the croutons: Preheat oven to 400°F. Heat olive oil and garlic cloves in a small saucepan over medium-high; cook until garlic begins to sizzle, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove and discard garlic.

Place cubed baguette in a medium bowl; drizzle with garlic-infused oil. Toss to coat. Sprinkle with Parmesan, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat. Arrange in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven until toasted, 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside.

Prepare the salad: Heat vegetable oil in a heavy saucepan over medium-high to 375°F. Fry capers in 2 batches until golden, 30 seconds per batch. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain.

Combine vinegar, lemon juice, water, mustard, salt, anchovy fillets, garlic, and egg yolk in a blender. Process until smooth. With blender running, slowly add olive oil until thickened. Transfer dressing to a bowl; stir in pepper and ¼ cup of the grated cheese.

Combine romaine hearts, croutons, and remaining ¼ cup grated cheese in a large bowl; drizzle with ¾ cup of the dressing, and toss gently to coat. Divide lettuce mixture among 4 plates; sprinkle with capers and shaved cheese. Serve with remaining dressing on the side.– 8 servings.

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This dessert is so-o-o good. It’s a bit putzy but absolutely worth the time involved!

CHOCOLATE LAVA CAKE
Baking spray, for spraying custard cups

1 stick butter
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate
2 oz. semisweet chocolate
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
2 whole eggs
3 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
Vanilla ice cream, for serving

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Spray four custard cups with baking spray and place on a baking sheet.

Microwave the butter, bittersweet chocolate and semisweet chocolate in a large bowl on high until the butter is melted, about 1 minute. Whisk until the chocolate is also melted. Stir in the sugar until well blended. Whisk in the eggs and egg yolks, then add the vanilla. Stir in the flour. Divide the mixture among the custard cups.

Bake until the sides are firm and the centers are soft, about 13 minutes. Let stand 1 minute. Invert on individual plates while warm and serve with vanilla ice cream.


Thought for the Day: Enjoy each day like it’s your last. It will change your whole attitude!

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