While I was stuck in traffic the other day I heard someone on the radio blathering on and on about how the best Valentine's Day celebration was a bunch of flowers and then dinner out.
That would be the WORST Valentine's Day celebration!
Yes, flowers are a wonderful treat but they wilt and end up in the green bin.
The only thing WORSE than dinner out on Valentine's Day is dinner out on Mother's Day. Crowds. Poor service. Tables packed so close to one another that you have to scream at your companion to be heard over the inane couple beside you. Mediocre food on some set menu.
THIS is how one should celebrate Valentine's Day . . . a quiet dinner at home that you cook together, drinks, chatter, laughter, gifts.
Paul worked yesterday so when he got home we had lunch and a nap. Once he was energized we set to work. When I asked him what he wanted for Valentine's dinner he said 'dumplings'. Dumplings might make a nice appetizer but not an entire meal. Here is what we did:
Martinis (whipped up by Paul) and assorted dumplings and rolls by the fire.
This is a better shot of the dumplings . . . we did pork shu mai, shrimp har gao, fried pork and scallion dumplings, steamed pork buns, and spring rolls. They were served with a soy/chili/ginger dipping sauce and a sweet chili dipping sauce.
Once we were done that we moved into the dining room where the table was all set for a celebration!
We kept going with the Asian theme . . . orange chicken, Chinese ribs, broccoli with ginger and oyster sauce, Dan Dan Noodles and steamed Jasmine Rice. Paul selected a floral Gruner Vetliner wine to accompany the main course.
A few years ago I decided that it was far easier to buy a nice dessert for Valentine's Day than to make something. This year I bought these heart-shaped chocolate and raspberry mousse cakes.
They were great with a tiny glass of ice wine.
Then we moved on to gifts. I think this was the favourite part of the evening for the cats!