What are your plans for Valentine’s Day, or la Saint Valentin?
First of all, several musts : champagne rosé , un bouquet de fleurs , and un dessert de chez Pierre Hermé. Un parfum sera très apprécié !
I personally recommend any version of Ispahan that you can order, whose main ingredients are Rose, Raspberry and Litchis.
Here is a nice menu that is simple and elegant to make :
Entrée : mini crab cake quiche
Plat : Tagliatelles/Risotto/Linguine aux Coquilles Saint-Jacques
Fromages : Neufchâtel ou Chèvre
Dessert : Ispahan cake
Crab cakes have their roots in Maryland, where softshell or blue crabs are indigenous. The Tabard Inn in Washington, D.C. was one of my favorite restaurants, to which my sister-in-law introduced me many years ago, and where my youngest son took me for Mother’s Day recently.
Here is their Crab quiche recipe that will make a lovely starter to your Valentine’s dinner:
1 pound jumbo-lump crabmeat
1 red pepper, finely diced
2 leeks, washed, diced, and sautéed over low heat in 1 tablespoon butter until softened
2 ears of corn, stripped, shucked, and sautéed over low heat in 1 tablespoon butter until softened
¼ cup chopped basil
1 cup grated Fontina cheese
2 cups heavy cream
3 large eggs
1½ teaspoons salt
1½ teaspoons pepper
For the Plat, and for a wonderfully delicious main course, I will let you choose between which base you decide to use, but you probably know my choice already : linguine!
I fry up the Coquilles Saint-Jacques in salted butter, very briskly, with only a few minutes on each side, and finish off with a splash of white wine and a dash of fresh ground pepper. When serving, roughly chop your favorite fresh herbe, such as coriander, parsley, chives or my favorite, rosemary. Important : in order to appreciate the wonderful taste of the sea in your plate, don’t overwhelm the Scallops with lots of spices and herbs. Remember : Simple, c’est meilleur!
For the cheese, I love the soft, velvety taste and texture of the heart-shaped Neufchâtel cheese.
For wine, or champagne, it should be rosé, from start to finish, all the way through to dessert!
Bonne fête aux Amoureux!