This year our Valentine’s Day was packed with activities! While we usually don’t put a lot of attention to the day other than going out for dinner, the day and evening turned into a whole celebration of family time. My husband had prepared me beforehand letting me know that he was taking out the whole family out for breakfast. I was excited because not only is it my favorite meal of the day but my girls love it too and LOVE going to a restaurant.
If you could only hear my girls (2 and 3 years old) scream with delight. RESTAURANT!!!! Yes. We are raising little foodies and they like it. We originally were going to a greasy spoon in Downingtown called Coffee Cup, but since they have AWFUL coffee we decided to try a NEW place in Kimberton. We arrived with ample time and actually before the crowd arrived but despite that our breakfast order took almost an HOUR to be brought the to table. We almost exhausted all options for our young girls at the table only to receive very tasteless food.
Despite all that we at least had great coffee and my husband surprised me by sending me off for a few hours on my own while he took care of the girls. What was I to do with myself? I went into my local nail salon and had my eyebrows waxed and I had a manicure. While I never planned on doing either, I was happy I got to do them both! After that I went shopping the rest of the time and came home and relieved my hubby so he could get an oil change.
Our dinner plans were all relaxed since we were not going out on our own. I originally planned to prepared the meal for my husband and I to enjoy but then my husband said he was going to prepare it so the girls could enjoy it too. Well, plans changed because I had a recipe job to finish and the meal preparation was going to take longer than planned. We prepared a separate dinner for the girls to have before going to bed and their daddy surprised them with chocolate-covered strawberries. You can only imagine their delight.
Our whole meal was a treat from Whole Foods and while we thought it was going to be simple, the process for each portion of the meal just required time. We first started out with our appetizer which was a scrumptious Warm Cheddar, Ale and Bacon Dip that tasted like a fondue, which is something I have not had in a long time.
My husband prepared the recipe and halved it since we knew it was just the two of us enjoying it. The recipe called for a hoppy ale, which is my favorite, which made for such a tasty dip and the Cabot extra sharp cheddar was amazing! We accompanied it with blue corn chips but we knew it would be amazing with crusty bread too. Our oldest daughter enjoyed tasting the dip too while my youngest shoved it away.
While my husband got the girls ready for bed and played with them, I prepared Potatoes Au Gratin. This is a traditional dish over the holidays at my mother’s house, but I looked forward making it during a non-traditional time. I used a newer recipe that took about an hour to cook and it was so creamy and flavorful with each bite.
Hubby was in charge of making the filet mignon and veggies. While he scanned various articles on the best way to cook meat, I knew he had been wanting to try a new method for cooking beef called the reverse sear.
He wrapped each cut of meat in bacon to add a little fat. He then salted and peppered the meat, rubbed it with minced garlic and placed in a preheated oven at 275 degrees Fahrenheit for 40-45 minutes. He used his Thermapen meat thermometer to measure the meat’s internal temperature. When it reached 125 degrees Fahrenheit, he pulled it out of the oven and let it rest a few minutes. He then placed the meat on a pre-heated cast iron skillet for about 1-2 minutes per side until the internal temp was between 135-140.
The meat was the MOST tender piece of meat I have had in quite a long time. It was so flavorful! He also cooked the asparagus perfectly with some lemon juice, salt and pepper. While it all looks simple on a plate, I thought it was such a gourmet-tasting meal. It was so awesome to be able to have something so nice and fancy at home and we saved money on babysitting too!
The last course of the evening was the chocolate zabaglione we have had before. We have always used Giada’s recipe and so I made that over the stove so we could enjoy after our lovely dinner. It is such a simple dessert but it is sure to wow your guests for a dinner party. We love it and know that it is a one-time decadence. It is normally enjoyed with berries so we sliced up strawberries which then completed our evening.
Thanks to Whole Foods in Devon for setting us up with all the fabulous ingredients to make this gourmet meal possible. I have had a lot of people ask about the Belvoir Sparkling Elderflower Pink Lemonade and I have to say that it was a most wonderful substitute for wine for this meal especially for this pregnant mom. I love finding unique products at Whole Foods to make them a staple.
How was YOUR Valentine’s Day?
Disclosure: Our meal was sponsored by Whole Foods Market in Devon