Valentine's Day Dinners for 2015
February 19, 2015

Thanks to the fact that Valentine's Day fell on a Satureday this year, my husband took me to one of my favorite places, Prune, to celebrate.

Prune created five unique courses for Valentine's day. "For Mr. Ashley Merriman — No more bridge. No more tub" was a dinner for two that included a huge rib-eye steak. "For Logan — For richer, for poorer, my believer and my dreamer" had some unique dishes like steamed egg custard and duck confit Banh Mi salad. If you are vegetarian, there was "Good it wasn’t; bye it is!". I picked the "A new husband, but an old friend" which was seafood heavy and my husband decided to go with "For Lucas — 'My Ideal'" which comes with grilled lamb loin chops.

"For Lucas — 'My Ideal'"
Fried Clams with homemade hot sauce
Chopped Raw and Cooked Vegetable Salad
Grilled Lamb Loin Chops with breadcrumb salsa
Ripe Epoisses, ripe pear, honeycomb and Jim Lahey’s no-knead bread


"A new husband, but an old friend"
Potatoes and Eggs in olive oil, marinated white anchovies, Marcona almonds and tinned white asparagus
Grilled Head-on Shrimp, pimenton oil, pickled mushrooms
Squid Ink Pasta with crispy Serrano ham and cultured butter
Bill Peet’s Chocolate Mousse with sherry macerated berries

Prune has a perfect Valentine's day look all year long with their signature Prune pink. Service is always great, drinks are yummy, and their food is not too adventurous but certainly not boring either. There was a tiny problem with my pasta dish but otherwise, I enjoyed my meal very much. My husband's dessert course was great for someone who does not like sweet desserts. I am guessing 95% of the restaurants in the the country serve chocolate dessert on this particular day so I really appreciated having a non-chocolate dessert at Prune.

On the following day, I cooked a special Valentine's meal in return. This year, I decided to cook braised oxtail from my bible, The Zuni Cafe cookbook. I made this dish for the first time 12 years ago and I have made this dish many times ever since. It is not a difficult dish to make and it comes out amazingly delicious every time. I usually like to serve this with creamy polenta but this time I served saffron risotto instead, along with some roasted Brussels sprouts and green salad. For dessert, I made caramel custard tart. It was a great make-ahead dessert for non-chocolate lovers.