Do you plan on having a stay at home date for Valentine’s Day or are you stepping out?
I had the opportunity to chat with Laura Vitale, self-taught internet cooking sensation about great ideas to stay at home this Valentine’s Day.
Don’t get me wrong, staying in isn’t for everyone (especially when you have kids haha), but Laura gives great recipe ideas for those of you who don’t feel like braving the potential crowds at a local restaurant this Valentine’s Day.
Listen here and then check out the recipes below:
In preparation for Valentine’s Day, ConAgra Foods issued a survey to better understand Millennials’ dinner plans and preferences. Here are a few highlights from the survey results:
Most Millennials “love to cook” (60%), but less than 20% say they have good recipes and ideas
52% of Millennials believe it’s more romantic to cook at home with their significant other than it is to go out to eat
40% of Millennials will stay in and cook this Valentine’s Day
56% of respondents will find their Valentine’s Day recipe by either searching on the web or watching an online cooking show
More than half Millennials say cost and crowded restaurants are barriers to dining out for Valentine’s Day
52% of respondents say Italian is the most romantic cuisine
71% of Millennials say chocolate is their top pick for dessert
Most Millennials have set their Valentine’s Day meal budget for $50-$100 – whether they are going out to eat or staying in
RECIPES FROM LAURA IN THE KITCHEN
Lemon Roasted Chicken Thighs
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 8 skin on bone-in chicken thighs a little less than 2lb total
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 cup white wine pinot grigio used for this recipe
- 3/4 cup chicken stock
- 1 3" sprig rosemary needles stripped from the stem and roughly chopped
- 1/2 lemon the juice only
- 1/2 32 oz bag Alexia Roasted Tri-Cut Potatoes with Sea Salt
- 1 tbsp chopped rosemary
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Position one oven rack in the lower third of the oven and the other in the centre.
- Season both sides of the chicken well with seasoned salt and black pepper and set aside.
- Preheat an oven proof skillet over medium high heat, add the oil and allow it to get nice and hot, add the chicken, skin side down and cook for about 3 minutes on each side or until it develops some good deep golden brown color. Discard any oil from the pan.
- To the same skillet over medium heat, add the butter and allow it to melt, add the garlic and saute for about 1 minute.
- Add the wine, allow it to reduce by half, this will take about 30 seconds, add the lemon juice, chicken stock and rosemary and bring mixture to a boil.
- Add the chicken back into the sauce (skin side up) and pop it all in the oven on the middle rack. Roast for about 25 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked through.
- Scatter the potatoes on a baking sheet in a single layer, and pop them in the oven on the lower rack. Roast alongside the chicken giving them a toss every 10 minutes to insure even cooking. Ten minutes after you put them in, sprinkle some rosemary over top (doing this at this point helps the rosemary adhere to the potatoes) and continue roasting.
- Remove the chicken from the oven, scatter over some parsley and serve alongside the roasted potatoes.
Pasta with Pancetta and Cherry Peppers
- 12 oz penne pasta or any pasta shape of your choice
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 4 oz pancetta diced into 1/4" pieces
- 4 cloves garlic sliced
- 2 14.5 oz cans Hunt's tomato sauce
- 1 tsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1/3 cup pickled cherry peppers (approx 3) seeds removed and peppers torn or chopped into bite size pieces
- 2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
- 1/4 cup freshy grated parmigiano to taste
- Fill a large pot with water, add a pinch of salt and bring to a boil.
- In a large skillet with high sides, add the olive oil and preheat it over medium heat, add the pancetta and cook until the pancetta renderers it's fat and crisps up a bit, this will take around 5 minutes.
- Add the garlic, saute for an additional 2 minutes or until the garlic lightly browns.
- Add the tomato sauce, the Italian seasoning and sugar, give everything a nice stir bring the mixture up to a boil, reduce the heat to medium low. Partially cover the skillet with a lid and simmer for 25 minutes.
- About 10 minutes before the sauce is done cooking, the pasta water should be boiling, add the pasta, cook according to package instructions and drain well.
- Add the cherry peppers to the sauce along with a good pinch of salt and pepper, stir in the pasta, parsley and parmigiano.
What are your plans this Valentine’s Day? Staying in or going out?