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Posts Tagged ‘valentine’s day’

Recette’s Jesse Schenker: Serving Up Gourmet Romance

To get ready for Valentine’s Day, we asked some husband-wife chef and restaurant management duos to share their romantic stories: how they met, what they like to cook to celebrate the holiday and whether their restaurants go all out in the name of love.

Written by Jesse Schenker, Chef and Owner of NYC’s Recette. His wife Lindsay Schenker is the restaurant’s Director of Operations. Together they run this urban, contemporary American restaurant where progressive techniques are married with traditional flavors.

Lindsay and I met at Coral Springs Middle School in South Florida when we were in 8th grade. We were in different classes but had a mutual family friend; I didn’t know it at the time, but she had a pretty big crush on me. When we were in 9th grade, I became very interested in her, but things didn’t quite work out. The same thing happened again in 10th grade – and I didn’t hear from her for 10 years. I always thought about her as the one that got away.

In May of 2008, Lindsay sent me a MySpace message after she read an article about Recette Private Dinning. I responded immediately and, well, the rest is history. A few months later , she moved from San Francisco to New York and we’ve been inseparable ever since.

We’re really busy at Recette for Valentine’s Day. We will be serving a 5-course tasting menu featuring oysters, caviar and champagne, ending with a decadent chocolate dessert, and accompanied by John Coltrane playing throughout the restaurant. One year, we had a man propose during the meal. The woman he was with started screaming out of excitement. Everyone in the restaurant was buzzing, especially when he got down on one knee! It was very cute.

As for my valentine, Lindsay, I will make her favorite dish for her after service: fresh cut spaghetti with sweet shrimp, stewed tomato, chili and sea urchin (recipe below), paired with a Burgundy to make her extra happy. She doesn’t cook, but I love her homemade cards every year.

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Candy is Dandy, but Liquor is Quicker: Homemade Valentine’s Day Liqueur

For a holiday that’s all about romance, Valentine’s Day sure stacks the deck against would-be lovers. On no day is there greater pressure to have a memorable night with someone special, yet what are the available weapons in your arsenal of love? Uninspired prix-fixe menus, wildly marked up bottles of bubbly and bouquets of flowers and truly some of the worst candy confectioners have ever inflicted upon our collective palates. For example, conversation hearts taste like sugar, chalk and, sometimes, cough syrup. (Yet do you think I can stop eating them? Of course not.) And heaven help you if you invest in one of those heart-shaped boxes of “chocolates.” There is no surer way to nip a budding relationship.

I’m not saying you won’t score some points with a prospective paramour by presenting gaudy offerings and doing some kind of courtship dance like a bird in the wild. I’m just saying that sometimes it’s best to just cut to the chase. When it comes to modern love, as the saying goes, candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker.

I confess there is one V-Day candy I enjoy. Imperial Hearts are just Red Hots made into little heart shapes, and yet they somehow taste different, better. Perhaps it’s because they are a metaphor for the day. Romance should be sweet, of course, but the heat of passion rescues it from being insipid. And made into a sweet-spicy liqueur, well, be still my beating heart.

A dribble of this lurid liqueur will turn even the cheapest sparkling wine into an absolute aphrodisiac.

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Cooking Channel Staff Chocolate Challenge: Pics from the Feast

Chocolate Brownies

No matter your relationship status, Valentine’s Day always means one thing: gorging on chocolate. That’s why we at CookingChannelTV.com hosted an in-house Chocolate Cook-Off with our colleagues at FoodNetwork.com and Food.com. The parameters: Simply bring in your best homemade chocolate treat.

Dessert was not obligatory, but no one went the molé route — although post-sugar crash, we wished someone had gone savory.

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

Be Our Valentine

This year for Valentine’s day, we want you to be ours!

We want to serve you easy, beautiful, adventurous, interesting, challenging and — above all — delicious recipes every single day of the year. That’s true love! Whether it’s a new, every-day chicken recipe or something really over the top, we want to be there for you.

So watch us, follow us, like us, pin us and subscribe to us — we promise not to take your love for granted.

So many ways to love us:

Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us!

And if you’re still looking for Valentine’s Day recipes for the other special someone in your life, we’ve got them here:

Meatless Monday: Chocolate For Dinner

poached eggs mole recipe
Bobby Flay’s Poached Eggs in Mole Sauce With Creamy Green Rice

Valentine’s Day is tomorrow but since February is basically a month-long excuse to eat a whole bunch of chocolate, don’t wait till tomorrow to indulge. If you haven’t already been eating chocolate daily, start today, and have some for dinner. Now, don’t go all crazy and eat cake for dinner; there are plenty of savory recipes that call for cocoa, like Chocolate Pasta and mole sauce.

Mole is a dark, rich, traditional Mexican sauce (mole means “concoction” in the Aztec dialect Nahuatl); it varies in color and flavor based on the recipe or what the cook has in their kitchen, but it’s generally made with onion, garlic, chilies, ground seeds (like sesame or pepian) and a bit of bitter chocolate. The chocolate adds depth to the sauce without over sweetness, since unsweetened or Mexican chocolate is used. Mole sauce is usually served with chicken, so you won’t find too many vegetarian mole dishes at Mexican restaurants. But just like tomato sauce isn’t just for meatballs, mole isn’t just for chicken. Make it at home and serve it over nachos, slathered on top of spinach or black bean enchiladas, or with poached eggs and creamy rice, like in Bobby Flay’s Poached Eggs in Mole With Creamy Green Rice. Bobby serves his meatless mole dish for brunch in an episode of Brunch@Bobby’s dedicated to chocolate, but this savory dish would make a great dinner, as well.

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Anti-Valentine’s Day: Nadia G. Plans a Girls’ Night In

Did you just suffer a nasty break-up? Are you down on love? Or perhaps you just can’t stand all those red hearts and flowers? Nadia G. — the fiercest chef around — has the perfect anti-Valentine’s Day plan for those dodging Cupid’s arrows: a girls’ night in, complete with tasty eats. Save your formal wear for another fest; this pajama poker party is all about comfy and cool.

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Anti-Valentine Valentine’s Day Menu

Table for one? Yes please.  If it’s just you, be selfish on V-Day: Pour yourself a (bottomless) glass of wine and indulge on what would normally be considered suitor-repelling dishes. To rebel against a truly annoying holiday, we bring you an Anti-Valentine Valentine’s Day Menu. Think of it as a special way to stab Cupid with your own arrow; a soul-soothing, savory satisfying arrow. 

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30-Second Chocolate Cake

All yours, in 30 seconds.

Run out of time to bake a chocolately sweet for your honey on Valentine’s Day? This moist little beauty only takes 30 seconds to make! Is it possible, you ask?

Jeff Potter, author of Cooking for Geeks and recent Food(ography) guest, shared with us his recipe for immediate chocolate-cake gratification.

Jeff uses the foaming power of a cream whipper and the heating power of the microwave to do in 30 seconds what most cake recipes take around 30 minutes to achieve—incorporating air into a batter and rising it up into a cake. Please try this at home!

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Happy Valentine’s Day from Cooking Channel

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The great lovers of our time — Brad and Angelina, Fergie and Josh, Demi and Ashton, Debi and Gabriele — share their lives together, their families, their meals, their kitchens. Could it be that the couple that sautés together, stays together?

Debi Mazar and Gabriele Corcos, the Lucy and Ricky of Cooking Channel, let us in on their Valentine’s Day plans; in between raising a family, starring in a cooking show and perfecting pasta, they’ll find some time for love.

What are you and your Valentine indulging in today?


Valentine’s Day at Cooking Channel:

Meringues: Better Than Chocolate?

Laura Calder’s crisp-chewy meringues: A perfect sweet bite for the chocolate-hater in your life.

In February, chocolate is everywhere. But what if your valentine isn’t a fan? Yes, these people are out there (my fiancé, sadly, is one of them). If you’re stuck with this dilemma too, but need a sweet treat to end your romantic Valentine’s Day dinner, Laura Calder has your solution: Homemade meringues. Even I, a confessed chocoholic, might pick one of these melt-in-your-mouth confections over a dipped strawberry.

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