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eat your 
heart out 
a valentine's day menu |
1 2 3 

I don’t believe in love potions, spells, magical aphrodisiac ingredients. I don’t care how erotic raw oysters on the half-shell are purported to be – they’re slimy, they’re gross, and as far as I’m concerned, there’s just nothing particularly sexy about grimacing while you slurp down your meal. Which is not to say that I don’t think good food can get you in the mood for love. I’m just of the opinion that, when it comes to preparing the perfect romantic feast, it’s more important to think about which flavors appeal to you – and your sweetie – than it is to spend heaps of money on the accepted love food clichés.

So when it comes time to prepare a special dinner for two – for Valentine’s Day, for anniversaries, or just ‘cause the mood happens to strike – I don’t pull out the champagne, or lug home two juicy prime cuts of steak. I think about those ingredients that I know will make my boyfriend start drooling at the mere mention of their inclusion in a meal. And for my particular boy, it’s all about sun-kissed Mediterranean flavors – rich olives and fruity olive oil, copious amounts of garlic (fortunately, I happen to be a fan as well), the distinctive aroma of freshly torn basil in the kitchen, and the tangy sweetness of sun-dried tomatoes.

The best thing about this all-veggie menu is that it’ll leave your kitchen smelling absolutely divine – no need to combat any fishy, meaty smells. And, though there’s a good amount of sinfully rich brie – for those of you who think a romantic meal should be an indulgence of sorts – all in all this is a meal designed to pique your senses, to leave you just full enough that your belly will be happy, without inducing the dreaded food coma. After all, the dinner is just the start of the evening’s activities, right?

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