Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Party of Two

This Valentines, we decided to avoid the crowds and stay home!  Actually, we went out for dinner on the 13th, then stayed in on the 14th.  We both agreed that we liked our night at home better - the atmosphere was better, the food was better, and the price was, well... a lot better!  We opted for a "French Bistro" menu which was simple and casual but still special enough for Valentines.
 Bistro Menu:
  • White wine steamed mussels
  • Herb roasted chicken
  • Pommes Frites
  • Molten chocolate cakes
White Wine Steamed Mussels

Mussels sound complicated, but they are quite possibly one of the easiest things I've cooked.  Plus, a two pound bag of mussels was only $5.99 at Whole Foods!
1-2 pounds of mussels
2 finely chopped shallots
2-3 chopped garlic cloves
1 cup dry white wine
thyme or chives for garnish

Discard any broken or open mussels.  Rinse under cold water.  Saute garlic and shallots in olive oil in a large skillet for 2-3 minutes over medium heat.  Add wine and bring to a simmer.  Add mussels and cover, letting steam for 5-7 minutes until all mussels open.  Discard any mussles that do NOT open.  Sprinkle mussels with thyme or chives and kosher salt.  Serve in a bowl with broth and crusty bread, if desired.
Herb Roasted Chicken

skin on, bone-in chicken breasts and leg pieces (I used one breast and one leg)
1 tablespoon fresh chopped basil
1 tablespoon fresh chopped thyme
1 tablespoon fresh chopped rosemary
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons olive oil
fresh cracked pepper

Preheat oven to 350.  Combine all herbs, olive oil, salt, & pepper in a small bowl.  Rinse chicken & pat dry.  Loosen skin and run herb mixture under skin.  Drizzle chicken tops with olive oil & sprinkle with kosher salt.  Roast for 45 minutes at 350 degrees.  Then increase the oven to 450 degrees and roast for 30 additional minutes.
Pommes Frites

2-3 Yukon gold potatoes (for 2 people)
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh chopped thyme
2 teaspoons garlic salt

Cut potatoes into thin matchsticks.  In a Ziploc bag, toss potatoes with olive oil, thyme, and garlic salt.  Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.  Do not cover the baking sheet with foil - fries will stick.  Bake at 450 degrees for 20 - 30 minutes, tossing once during cooking with a spatula. If you're making these with the chicken, simply add them to the oven for the last 30 minutes of the chicken's cooking time when the chicken is cooking at 450 as well.

Molten Chocolate Cakes
{My mom's recipe}

20 unwrapped dove dark chocolate pieces
6 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/4 cup flour

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Spray 4 ramekin dishes with cooking spray.  Melt chocolate, butter, and sugar over low heat.  Whisk in eggs.  Stir in flour and mix well.  Pour evenly into 4 prepared dishes and place dishes on a baking sheet.  Bake 10 - 13 minutes.  Serve warm with vanilla ice cream and/or fruit.


Kate said...

You are quite possibly the most perfect woman ever :) What an amazing meal! We opted to stay in too, but my hubs picked up Carrabbas and brought it home. You are so right. The atmosphere was perfect. Thanks for sharing your recipes. I may come back and attempt at some point in the future! PPL

Liz said...

YUM!!!!! We went out on the 13th, too. AKA "Mistress Night". ;) I made steak, sweet potato fries and creamed spinach on V-Day. Yours looks better though. AS USUAL. :D

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