Dave and I have never celebrated Valentine's Day in the Hallmark card, heart-shaped box of chocolates, candlelight and rom-com romance kind of way. Most years,...Read More
Paleo Valentine’s Day Menus
Even though I firmly believe that life is best when we don’t eat our feelings, I’m also 100% committed to the idea that we can show sincere, true, nurturing love with homemade food—especially when it’s grain-free, dairy-free, legume-free deliciousness.
When I make dinner for Dave every evening, I’m not just cooking the food—I’m demonstrating my devotion. Other people might be into heart-shaped chocolate boxes and roses, but I show the depth of my affection with garlic cloves, duck fat, Japanese sweet potatoes, and by remembering that he likes Cholula Hot Sauce with his eggs and it’s always ‘yes’ to green olives and ‘no’ to black (even though he can barely remember which type of olives he prefers.)
I say: Share the food love.
With that in mind, I’ve pulled together three Valentine’s Day menus for you and your favorite person to feed. (And if that’s the same person, that is awesome. I love to make special dinners for myself and you should, too.)
Menu 1: Salmon Cakes
This menu is built around spiced salmon cakes and oven fries. It’s a little elegant and a little fun, and most of the work is done in the oven, which means clean-up is a snap. You can prep the salad a few days in advance, if you like. The salmon cakes, fries, and carrots are quick to prep and are roasted in the oven so you can relax while dinner finishes itself.
Oven-Fried Salmon Cakes
Herb Parsnip Fries
Menu 2: Walnut-Crusted Pork Chops
This one starts with a soup course and the main event elevates basic meat-and-potatoes to something special. Make the soup and a few days in advance, then cook the home fries while the pork chops are in the oven. Easy-peasy.
Golden Cauliflower Soup
Walnut-Crusted Pork Chops with Baked Apples
Classic Home Fries
Menu 3: Moroccan Salmon
This menu goes on a trip somewhere a little exotic with earthy spices and brilliant colors. Make the soup a few days in advance. When it’s time to cook for dinner, make the salad first so the flavors can meld. The salmon and spinach are fast and easy, so you can ease into dinner.
Persian Spiced Winter Vegetable Soup
Moroccan Orange Salad
Simple Lemon Spinach
If you’re not doing a Whole30 and want to finish your meal with a treat, these are both very satisfying and are not too sweet.
2-Ingredient Chocolate Mousse
Sweet & Salty Fudge Bombs
More Menu Ideas
If none of these seem quite right for you, take a look at the menus for my Latin American Dinner Party, Eastern European Feast, or the Spicy-Sweet Dinner Party.
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I will miss you, Mel. Fair winds and following seas.