The Perfect Valentine's Day Dinner for Two
As cheesy as it may sound, I often daydream about having a special someone to cook for. I spend a lot of time in the kitchen, and cooking is definitely one of my love languages. If I had a boyfriend, instead of going out on Valentine’s Day, I would whip up a decadent and extravagant dinner for two. With enticing aromas, free-flowing wine, and the proper playlist, cooking with a significant other can be incredibly sexy. To encourage you to stay in and treat your honey to a fancy meal, I’ve come up with the perfect spread of Valentine’s Day eats. Here’s an ultimate over-the-top menu that’s sure to wow your sweetheart come February 14.
Oysters are one of the most notorious aphrodisiacs, so naturally they belong on your Valentine’s Day table. Serve them raw on the half shell with a tangy shallot mignonette and Champagne-infused foam. Slurp on!
If you prefer your oysters piping hot from the oven with a umami-salty topping, make these skillet-baked oysters with shiitake mushrooms, bacon, and basil. The topping can be made a couple of hours in advance; just heat it up before you pile it on the oysters. Then bake and devour.
Oysters not your thing? Start your romantic meal with another aphrodisiac: figs. This easy appetizer recipe takes no time to prepare. Simply top halved dried figs with a dollop of ricotta cheese, a sprinkle of toasted pistachios, and a drizzle of honey. Bam! Instant savory and sophisticated hors d'œuvre.
You can’t have a party for two without a bubbly cocktail, right? On Valentine’s Day, pop open a bottle of the good stuff and use it to make classic French 75s.
For the first course, offer a luxurious and creamy starch dish, like this black truffle tagliatelle. A couple of unlikely ingredients—chanterelle mushrooms, dried lavender, watercress, and pecorino cheese—blend together perfectly in the buttery sauce.
If you don’t want to splurge on (and seek out) black truffles, serve equally indulgent brown butter scallops with parmesan risotto as the first course.
After the richness of the first course, move onto a light and crisp palette-cleansing salad. Toss asparagus with mesclun greens and purple radishes and you’ve got a pretty salad that’s almost too good to eat. If you’re feeling fancy, use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to cut the paper-thin slices of radishes into edible hearts.
Lamb chops are my go-to celebratory-meal-at-home protein. They’re not an everyday meat, so whenever I have them, it feels like a treat. Follow this recipe to make mint and cumin-spiced lamb chops. Instead of cooking them on the grill outside, use the broiler to char at a high heat.
Meat and potatoes are a match made in heaven. Since lamb chops are a little gourmet, serve a potato that’s equally epicurean, like these deep-fried shoestring fries. They are so crispy and addictive that you won’t be able to stop eating them!
What’s for dessert? Classic chocolate mousse. It’s a nostalgic treat that everyone loves. It can sometimes be a pain to make, but this recipe uses a food processor to simplify the technique.
Okay, so you probably don’t need two desserts, but who could resist a couple of chocolate-covered strawberries? They are the most traditional romantic dessert around and rightfully so—when made with fresh strawberries, they are absolutely delicious!
Shop items for your Valentine’s Day tablescape below.
What’s on your menu for a romantic dinner for two?