Lobster is one of the most romantic meals to eat on Valentine’s Day — whether out at a restaurant or in the confines of your own home. While it’s certainly a special treat, it can also be terrifying, especially for new couples just starting to date (it can get quite messy). How do you eat a lobster? Where do you crack it? Can you only eat the tail?
No worries. Valentine’s Day dinner is only a few short hours away, but there’s still plenty of time to learn how to eat a lobster before then. Click the play button after the jump to watch Food Network Kitchens break down a lobster and you’ll soon be a pro (and your significant other will be very impressed).
WATCH the video now
Just like flowers and perhaps a glass or two of champagne, chocolate on Valentine’s Day is a must. This year, however, instead of resorting to store-bought candies, try making simple red velvet desserts for you and your special someone to enjoy together. Boasting a subtle cocoa taste instead of an overpowering punch of chocolate flavor, red velvet treats pair naturally with smooth cream cheese frosting, and their distinct crimson color just can’t be beat when it comes to a red-themed holiday like Valentine’s. We’ve rounded up Food Network’s top-five red velvet recipes below to help you prepare easy-to-love favorites that will have your sweetie swooning in no time.
5. Red Velvet Swirl Brownies — Before baking Sunny’s brownies, gently run a knife tip through the decadent layers of red velvet batter and sweetened cream cheese to achieve an attractive swirled topping.
4. Red Velvet-Cherry Cake Roll — The secret to executing this can-do cake is rolling it while it’s still supple and warm. After it’s cooled, unroll it and stuff with an almond-laced cream cheese frosting before gently rerolling the cake and serving.
Get the top three recipes
Instead of fighting the crowds of couples at hot spot restaurants on Valentine’s Day, treat your sweetie to an extra-special dinner and dessert at home on Thursday. Food Network’s one-stop Valentine’s Day destination has everything you need to plan a savory meal for two, while Chopped judge and Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian has the ultimate confection for an unforgettable supper — a showstopping dessert that’s by far more impressive looking than it is difficult to prepare, even for the most novice bakers among us.
FN Dish caught up with Geoffrey during a live cooking demonstration at the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, N.J., and he shared his tried-and-true Flourless Raspberry Souffle recipe from his cookbook, Town/Country: 150 Recipes for Life Around the Table. He’s the first to admit that most people are “freaked out by souffles,” but he promises that there’s no reason to be. A master of souffles himself, Geoffrey first began making them in his earliest days as a chef at New York City’s Le Cirque restaurant. “That was my first job in the kitchen,” he told us. “I was a souffle chef.” There he’d prepare nearly 150 souffles every day, and he quickly picked up “all the tricks of the trade.”
Whether you’ve dabbled in from-scratch souffles before or are new to making them, Geoffrey explains that there are a few must-know secrets to pulling off this dessert successfully. Check out his top-five tips for baking up light, fluffy souffles every time, then read on to find his can-do recipe.
Geoffrey’s souffle tips and recipe
Raise your hand if you’re not into going out to dinner on Valentine’s Day. I know I have my hand straight up in the air. It’s not that I don’t love restaurants; I honestly do. But it’s always such a zoo and I would much rather stay home with my honey and make us a memorable dinner spread in the comfort of our own home.
This year I’m jazzed about our menu: it’s fun and comforting and I know my husband is going to love it.
First I’m going to make a cheese plate, complete with lots of crackers and fruit — a cheese plate is the perfect way to start a nice meal at home. Read these tips from Food Network and head to the market to pick out several great varieties of cheese.
After that, we’re going to have salad from Giada (pictured above). I love beets, goat cheese and arugula, so this is the perfect salad. Plus it’s light so it won’t be too filling.
Get the recipe: Beet and Goat Cheese Arugula Salad
Read more »
Food Network Magazine asked Food Network’s Facebook fans what they’d take first from a box of Valentine’s Day chocolates. Some flavors get all the love.
Get the results
If you’re stuck in a dinner rut, try introducing simple, comforting fondue to your weekday recipe repertoire. Packed with deliciously soft, creamy cheeses, Food Network Magazine‘s Perfect Fondue (pictured above) recipe is a must-try for both first-time fondue makers and experienced cheese-melters alike.
The beauty of this recipe is that you get to pick what cheese is used based on your tastes and the ingredients you have on hand. If you have cheddar left over from game-day nachos, use that, but if you happen to be cooking for a cheese monger, it may be best to melt a creamy Brie or Gouda instead. No matter which cheese — or combination of cheeses — you choose, just add it to a garlic-rubbed saucepan simmering with white wine and lemon juice and finish with a few tablespoons of flour. This binding flour will help thicken the fondue and ensure that the end result is deliciously thick and creamy. Served alongside an array of dippers like crusty bread, fresh or roasted vegetables, grilled polenta and French fries, this 10-minute recipe is the ultimate in complete, go-to dinners. Although a fondue pot may add to the wow factor of presentation, it’s not necessary to pull off a successful dish; a standard slow cooker set to low will do the job just as well. To maintain a meatless meal, skip the meaty dippers like meatballs and prosciutto.
What’s that saying? “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.” I’d venture to say the way to anyone’s heart may just be through his or her stomach, and if you agree, you’ve come to the right place. With Valentine’s Day coming up fast, I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite Valentine’s cards (like Egg Press’ pictured above) and gifts for you to say “I love you” to your better half — the salt to your pepper, the peanut butter to your jelly. Well, you get the point.
Click here for Kelly’s picks
There are boxes of Valentine’s Day chocolate — and then there are boxes of Valentine’s Day chocolate. There is such a thing as chocolate that will make your significant other’s heart melt. That starts with wild bonbon combinations like chipotle caramel fudge with popping candy and sea salt, or salt butter caramel infused with fresh rosemary (a favorite) and sweet strawberry caramel with a touch of balsamic vinegar. Chuao Chocolatier has put together an assortment of aphrodisiac-infused bonbons and truffles for the upcoming holiday and now they’re giving FN Dish readers a chance to win one.
You can buy your own aphrodisiac box of Chuao Chocolate here or enter in the comment field below for a chance to win one. To enter: Tell us the most unique chocolate combination you’ve ever had. If you haven’t had one, tell us which combination from Chuao you’d want to try the most. We’re giving away aphrodisiac bonbon collections to five lucky, randomly selected commenters.
Read official rules before entering
Whether you embrace Valentine’s Day or not, one thing is for sure: Any reason to indulge in chocolate and other sweets is surely enough for us. Between Strawberry Truffles, Hot Hearts, Scotchmallow chocolates (one of our editor’s favorites), Cinnamon Lollypops and something out of the ordinary — a make-your-own box — See’s Candies has something for the whole family.
You can buy your Valentine’s Day sweets here or enter in the comment field below for a chance to win one. To enter: Tell us your favorite candy to give on Valentine’s Day in the comments. We’re giving away $25 gift certificates to five lucky, randomly selected commenters — just in time for the holiday.
Read official rules before entering
Some restaurants let you have your chocolate and drink it, too.
The Peninsula, Chicago
When The Peninsula needed a cocktail to complete its chocolate buffet spread, bartender Aaron Johnson developed three, and all of them ended up on the regular bar menu. This S’mores Martini (pictured above) causes the most fuss: Patrons smell the barkeeps toasting the marshmallow rim and can’t help but order one for themselves. 108 East Superior St.; peninsula.com
More chocolate cocktails »