Valentine’s Night In

Dinner and a movie done right

This Valentine’s Day, get all dressed up and stay in. Add style and swagger to your holiday by creating a cinematic date night at home. Here are a few effortless ideas to help you infuse your celebration with old Hollywood glam with a modern twist. Promise, sparks will fly!


Chicken Pot Pies. Photos by Brooke Clark

Chicken Pot Pies

If a homemade meal is the way to your significant other’s heart, then chicken pot pie with a truffle and sage crust is money!

  • Make the pies personal with individual servings.
  • Add savory flavors to your basic pie-crust recipe.
  • Give the crust a heart cookie-cutter stamp of approval prior to baking.
  • Serve from a tray for two in front of the fire.


Crab Cakes and Mixed Greens

Crab Cakes and Mixed Greens

Crab Cakes and Mixed Greens

Try my simple and yummy baked crab-cake recipe with rich crab meat, Pernod and tomato paste.

  • cup dry bread crumbs
  • ½ pound fresh crab meat, drained, picked over
  • cup mayonnaise
  • 1½ tablespoon chopped fresh chives
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fennel
  • 1½ teaspoon double concentrated tomato paste
  • teaspoon Pernod
  • 1½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • 1 small egg, beaten, to blend

Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place ¼ cup bread crumbs in shallow dish and set aside. In a separate bowl lightly mix crab meat, mayonnaise, chives, fennel, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, Pernod, mustard, hot pepper sauce and remaining bread crumbs. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix in egg. Use 2 tablespoons for each crab cake. Makes eight medium cakes.

Lightly coat crab cakes with ¼ cup breadcrumbs in dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 18 minutes, until golden brown.



Sorbet and Ice Cream Bomb with Heart Sparkler

Sorbet and Ice Cream Bomb with Heart Sparkler

  • Sparks will fly with this shower of glittery pyrotechnics! This do-ahead Valentine’s Day dessert is a scene-stealer, and it’s the bomb!
  • In small nesting bowls, layer and freeze store-purchased cherry sorbet and vanilla ice cream in three layers.
  • Freeze first layer between two bowls. Once frozen, pop out smaller bowl and add the next layer. Repeat. Dip the bowl bottom in warm water to unmold just prior to serving.
  • Add a mini heart sparkler, light and create a show-stopping dessert!

Meet Monica at met market: Girls Night In with Monica Hart at Metropolitan Market in Kirkland is on Feb. 5. Registration is limited.

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