Valentine’s Day Dinner Recipes for Dummies

Shanthi Appelo
Shanthi Appelo

| 2 min read

Gary Chapman's book, “The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts,” suggests five different styles of expressing love. These styles include words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service and physical touch. Everyone communicates and receives love differently, and according to YouGovAmerica, quality time is the love language preferred by most people.
If quality time resonates with you, you probably enjoy creating special moments together and value uninterrupted and focused conversations with your loved one. Many people express love for their family and friends by making food for them, and cooking is also a great way to spend quality time together. It can be an intimate activity that involves teamwork and communication. Plus, the result is a delicious meal to enjoy together at the same time.
Putting together a three-course meal for a special someone can feel overwhelming. The good news is it doesn’t have to be complicated. Check out this easy three-course line-up with health-forward dishes that have make-ahead component:
While bruschetta involves simple ingredients and a few simple steps, this appetizer is full of flavor. The bruschetta topping is prepared a traditional Italian way, leaning on the simplicity of the herbs and tomatoes to deliver mouthwatering bites. This first course features tomatoes as the star ingredient, which are loaded with fiber, great for gut and heart health, and contain lycopene, a heart-protective antioxidant.
Chicken parmesan is an Italian-American staple and an ultimate comfort food. If you’re looking for a lighter option to the deep-fried dish, this air fried version skips the heavy fat and crisps up similar to the real deal. Simply bread the chicken, add to a preheated air fryer, then serve over fettucine tossed with your favorite jarred marinara sauce and voila!
Chocolate-covered fruit is a delectable treat that leans on fruit for natural sweetness. To get a perfectly coated strawberry, it’s important to first wash and dry the fruit to allow for a stable surface for the chocolate to adhere to. Dark chocolate and strawberries are a beautiful flavor combination, but all chocolate chips aren’t created equal for melting. For the easiest-to-handle formula, purchase dark chocolate melting chips. Alternatively, add a teaspoon of coconut oil to 60% cocoa chocolate chips before microwaving.
Photo credit: Shanthi Appelo / BCBSM

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