|Have an intimate dinner at home with your Valentine.|
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National Eating Out Day
Going to a restaurant on Valentine's Day is like going to church on Easter Sunday. Now I'm not saying you should stop going to church on Easter Sunday, but I do suggest you stay home this Friday.
There may be a few small, local restaurants in your town who will do a good job just because that's just what they do, but most big restaurants will not. Here's what you can expect:
The restaurant will be mobbed and you'll be sitting elbow to elbow with a room full of strangers. And when you finally figure out how to focus real hard and filter out all the noise and distractions (so you can concentrate on your special someone), you will not-so-politely be given your check so that they can usher in the next seating.
And let's talk about the food. It will most likely be a Prix Fixe menu which means that you will be given very little selection. How else will they be able to crank out meals as fast as Hostess cranks out Twinkies (yes, I know that Hostess no longer owns Twinkies and that they are now owned by two private equity firms - but you get the point.) Needless to say, the quality of the food will be well below what you normally would expect from your favorite restaurant.
Don't expect the service to be great either. After all, your waiter would rather be spending the evening with someone special too.
And because reservations are in high demand, you'll be shelling out tons of cash for this romantic experience. Not quite the screwing you were hoping for on this special night :-)
Have a romantic meal at home. If you both love to cook, take some of that cash you just saved and use it to buy a great bottle of wine or champagne. Or spend it on expensive ingredients that you normally wouldn't spring for - like exotic mushrooms, organic raspberries, or gourmet chocolate truffles. Get a heart-shaped cake pan for fun. You can use it to bake a cake, cornbread, or even a casserole.
|You'll pay 3 times as much for champagne in a restaurant on Valentine's day as you would at a store like Costco.|
Together, plan a nice menu of your favorite foods - try sticking to simple dishes like the pasta Puttanesca I posted last week, or make pesto early in the day and mix it with Farfalle Pasta and Garbanzo beans for a quick entree. My pesca-vegan and fish-loving friends might enjoy Baked Honey Mustard Coho Salmon with Saffron Rice.
If you Must Eat Out
Now for those of you who cannot possibly create a romantic meal at home because of kids, roommates, or parents, or you just really would rather not fuss - here's another option. Schedule that romantic meal at your favorite restaurant on ANY night besides Valentines day. You can still get together on V-Day for a glass of wine, a movie, or whatever but make those dinner reservations on another day.
|Happy Valentine's Day!|
For simple and delicious recipe ideas, download my eBook, Health Begins in the Kitchen.