February’s Best Date Night Recipies

 

Prolong V-Day With These Delicious Date Night Ideas!

Making your honey feel like a million bucks this February doesn’t have to COST a million bucks. Ream’s Food Stores has everything you need to pick one of these dinner or desserts, to create a romantic intimate night for your loved one. Mix and match, there’s no wrong combo for these entertaining and delicious ideas!


- DINNER -

Steak and Rosemary Potatoes


This classic combo is a romantic staple for a reason. Cooking a steak just right is a little more technical of a culinary endeavor, but keep calm, collected, and follow the steps…you’ll be certain to impress the pants off your loved one! (Fingers crossed)

Ingredients:

  • 2 angus NY strip steaks
  • 1 pound red and yellow potatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 bunch parsley
  • 1 bunch rosemary
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

In a medium bowl, combine the garlic, olive oil, and rosemary. Wash the potatoes and cut into large chunks, about 1 inch in size. Toss the potatoes in the rosemary/olive oil mixture, spread onto a baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes in a 375 degree oven.

To prepare the steak, rub with olive oil, remaining rosemary, and salt and pepper. Grill on high for 2-3 minutes, then turn for another 2-3 minutes. Finish cooking steak in a skillet in the oven for about 5 minutes or until desired temperature.

Plate potatoes and steak and top with chopped parsley and chopped rosemary.


- DESSERT -

Easy Strawberry Cheesecake Parfait


If you’re short on time, or baking isn’t your forte, this recipe is a perfect option. It’s quick, simple, and you’ll have oh-so-yummy cheesecake flavors with none of the baking, mess, or hassle!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups strawberries
  • ½ cup strawberry jam (16oz Strawberries are On Sale This Week at Ream’s Food Stores!)
  • 12 ounces non-fat yogurt (vanilla)
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temp (low fat)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ⅓ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 ½ cups vanilla wafer cookies (crushed)
  • 4 small jars

Crush the wafer cookies in a zippable bag, line the bottom of the jars with the crumbs about ½ inch thick. Set aside. Beat together cream cheese, yogurt, powdered sugar, and vanilla in a medium bowl until the mixture is creamy, light, and smooth. Layer this mixture into the jars, cool in the fridge. Cut strawberries into slices and mix with jam–add a little water to jam if needed to thin it slightly. Once combined, cool in the fridge. Top the cheesecake mason jars with the strawberry mixture when ready to serve.


Chocolate Heart Mousse Cake


This decadent chocolate glory has a devil’s food cake base, milk chocolate mousse, and dark chocolate topping. Not for the faint of heart, but it will definitely put any chocolate-lover in a warm and cuddly mood. The steps are a bit trickier for this recipe, but if you’re someone who likes to cook, you will enjoy the process and have something really special to show off to your sweetheart.

Ingredients:

  • 1 18-ounce devil’s food cake mix (plus ingredients called for on box)
  • 14 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 12 tablespoons butter (On Sale This Week at Ream’s Food Stores!)
  • ¼ cup coffee
  • 10 large eggs, separated
  • 1 ¾ cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups heavy cream (cold)
  • 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate (for shell topping)
  • ¾ cup heavy cream (for shell topping)
  • 5 tablespoons light corn syrup (for shell topping)

Prepare cake according to box instructions in a 9 by 13 inch pan. Remove cake from pan once slightly cooled, then cool completely on a rack.



Clean the cake pan, then dry and line with plastic wrap. Using a serrated knife, cut the cake into 6 rectangles by doing one horizontal cut followed by 3 vertical cuts. Then carefully slice the height of each rectangle in half to create thinner pieces, now 12 total. Line the cake pan with one layer of cake.


To create the mousse, heat together chocolate, butter, coffee, and ¼ cup water in a double boiler. Stir gently until melted and completely combined. Remove from heat and set aside.


Whisk egg yolks, sugar, and 2 tablespoons of water in a separate bowl. Ensure the bowl is heatproof and place it over the double boiler, once again keeping the water at a simmer. When the egg/sugar mixture is a pale yellow, at about 6-8 minutes, add the original chocolate/coffee mixture to it. Continue to stir adding the vanilla until the mousse starts to cool, then place the bowl into a larger bowl filled with ice water. This will immediately finish cooling the mousse and is an imperative step in getting the texture desired. Whisk no more than 4 minutes to avoid excessive thickness.


The final step for the mousse is to beat heavy cream and a few tablespoons sugar until peaks are formed. Gently fold this into the mousse. Spread the final mousse over the cake layer, creating another layer with the remaining cake, much like a lasagna. Freeze overnight.


To create the chocolate shell on top, mix together chocolate heavy cream, and 4 tablespoons corn syrup in a double boiler until melted. Gently spoon over the frozen mousse and spread into a thin layer. Return to freezer. One set, use a heart-shaped pastry cutter or cookie cutter (without a lip) to serve for Valentine’s day.


Hot Cocoa Mix


Last but certainly not least, this clever idea turns your gift into a second date night for another time! Keep warm during the last months of winter with a quick cocoa recipe. By combining all the ingredients for your loved one ahead of time and packaging it up in a pretty way, you’ll be doing a win-win for your both…if you can get them to share the product of your efforts.

Ingredients:

Layer each ingredient into a jar or clear mug with a lid, topping with the marshmallows. Attach a custom card with the following instructions: “Remove marshmallows and set aside. Shake up remaining cocoa mix until combined. For each ½ cup cocoa mix, add 1 cup hot water or milk and stir together. Top with mallows.” Decorate the jar with stickers or ribbon for a sweet lovey-dovey look.

Football Party Foods

It’s Bowl Time!

It is that time of year everyone looks forward to. Gather around the TV with family and friends. Put on your gear and warn the neighbors – its going to get LOUD! This – the last chance of the season to watch your favorite team compete on the gridiron – calls for an epic football party. With our help, your bowl party just might become as legendary as the game!

Fundamentals

First, lets cover some fundamentals. These are the essentials your party will need just to stay competitive throughout the contest:

  • Plenty of Room
  • Comfortable Seating
  • Chips (You Want A Good Assortment)
  • Everyone’s Favorite Beverages
  • A Decent-Sized Television Screen (The Bigger, The Better)

Game-Day Atmosphere

Building up the game-day atmosphere will get your party amped up well before kickoff, and can keep it lively long after the final whistle.
Make your party the next best thing to being there in person with *these* game-winning tips:

  • Hold a quick game of two-hand touch in the yard prior to the game
  • Use football & team-themed serveware (Don’t use those leftover plates from Saint Patrick’s Day – unless you’re cheering for the Fighting Irish)
  • Decorate using your team’s colors; you’ve got team-spirit, show it off!
  • Create a “Concessions” banner to hang above your snack table
  • Designate a prize for the person who most closely predicts the final score of the game
  • Hold a touchdown-celebration dance contest at halftime

The Game-Winning Drive

You’ve prepared. You’ve taken care of the fundamentals. Your party is buzzing with that unmistakable game-day atmosphere. Time to push it over the top with the BEST football foods around!

Here are some fantastic recipes to score with any crowd:

Buffalo Chicken Dip

Recipe from tasteofhome.com
Click here for directions

Ingredients:

  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup cooked chicken breast
  • 1/2 cup Buffalo wing sauce
  • 1/2 cup ranch or blue cheese salad dressing
  • 2 cups shredded Colby-Monterey Jack cheese
  • French bread baguette slices, celery ribs or tortilla chips

7-Layer Dip

Recipe from pillsbury.com
Click here for directions

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups sour cream
  • 1 package (1 oz) Old El Paso™ taco seasoning mix
  • 1 can (4.5 oz) Old El Paso™ chopped green chiles
  • 1 can (16 oz) Old El Paso™ refried beans
  • 1 package (8 oz) refrigerated guacamole
  • 1 1/2 cups finely shredded Cheddar cheese (6 oz)
  • 1 cup pico de gallo
  • 1 can (2.25 oz) sliced ripe olives, drained
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onions
  • Tortilla chips, as desired

Pastrami Burgers

Recipe from thespruce.com
Click here for directions

Ingredients For Burgers:

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound sliced pastrami
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese
  • Optional: 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 4 large hamburger buns
  • 1 cup shredded lettuce

Ingredients For Russian Dressing:

  • 1 can (2.25 oz) sliced ripe olives, drained
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onions
  • Tortilla chips, as desired

Christmas Party Planning

 

Planning an effortless and whimsical Christmas party can seem stressful but with these simple tips you will be planning like a party pro.

1. Make a list

The menu is usually the most time consuming and demanding part of hosting a party. Make a list of all recipes you plan to make and the ingredients that go in it. Plan and feel free to ask your guests to bring something that will help you out.

2. Cook ahead of time

Make dishes that can either be made ahead of time or frozen and then defrosted. Do as much cooking as possible before hand or choose recipes that involve limited cooking or don’t need to be served piping hot.

3. Stock up on snacks

To be the best entertainer possible, always have extra snacks you can put out if people are hungry. Whether it be extra crackers and jarred tapenade or just an assortment of nuts, you will be glad you stocked up!

4. Keep in mind food preferences and restrictions

If you have friends or family that are vegetarians or have food allergies, be sure to be aware of those before planning your menu. Nothing will make a dinner party go south faster than someone getting sick or picking at their food. Create your menu with those needs in mind and have a variety of options. With that, here are some recipes to try at your next holiday party.

Appetizers

Whether you are having a more casual party with strictly hoer devours or you want to start out a plated meal with something delicious, here are some great options that will be sure to dazzle your guests!

Meat and Cheese Board

Tips by: theroastedroot.net

A meat and cheese board is a glorious way to create a beautiful and delicious appetizer with no cooking involved! Here are the basics that you will need:

 

  • A variety of meats and cheeses. Choose a soft cheese like brie, a hard cheese like parmesan and a stinky cheese like blue. For meats, you can do a variety of prosciutto and salami.
  • Add seasonal fruit. Some sweet fruits that pair perfectly with cheese would be strawberries, pears or grapes.
  • Jams or preserves. Choose fig or apricot to pair with cheese.
  • Add something salty. Choose mini pickles or olives since they pair great with meats such as salami.
  • Crackers and bread. These provide the perfect vehicle for stacking meat and cheese. Choose a variety of crackers and a baguette.

Stuffed Mushrooms

 

 

 

 

Recipe by: delish.com

Ingredients:

  • 20 medium white mushrooms
  • 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • ½ small onion
  • ½ small green pepper
  • Black pepper
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 can minced clams
  • 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • ¾ cup breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan
  • ¼ cup coarsely grated mozzarella

Instructions:

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Separate the stems from the mushroom caps. Finely chop the stems.

2. Heat the butter and 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, green pepper, and black pepper and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, for 4 minutes.

3. Add the mushroom stems and garlic and cook, stirring, until tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the clams and cook for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice, then the parsley, bread crumbs, and cheeses.

4. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the mushrooms in the remaining tablespoon oil and arrange stem-side up. Divide the bread crumb mixture among the caps (about 1 heaping tablespoon each) and bake until the mushrooms are golden brown and tender, 20 to 25 minutes.

Smoked Salmon Crostini

 

 

 

 

Recipe by: realsimple.com

Ingredients:

  • 24 thin slices of baguette
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
  • 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 4 ounces of smoked salmon

Instructions:

1. Heat oven to 400° F. Place the baguette slices on a baking sheet and brush both sides of the bread with the oil. Bake until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes per side.

2. In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, horseradish, and 1 tablespoon dill; season with ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper.

3. Dividing evenly, spread the cream cheese mixture on the toasted baguette slices. Top with the salmon and sprinkle with the remaining tablespoon of dill.

Main

If you are having a plated dinner here are some classic Christmas favorites.

Slow Cooker Honey Glazed Ham

 

 

 

 

Recipe by: wholefully.com

Ingredients:

  • 1 quarter of spiral-sliced fully cooked ham
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ cup water

Instructions:

1. Place the ham in the basin of a slow cooker.

2. In a small saucepan, combine the brown sugar, honey, mustard, cloves, and water over high heat. Heat until just warm enough to dissolve the sugar. Pour the mixture over the ham, making sure to separate the slices to let the glaze get between.

3. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4-6, basting with the cooking juices every few hours. Serve immediately, or, preheat the broiler, transfer the ham to a oven-safe dish, and pour the cooking liquid into a small saucepan. Heat cooking liquid on medium-high for 5-7 minutes, or until thick and bubbly. Brush onto ham, and broil for 4-5 minutes, removing to baste with additional glaze every minute or so.

Mushroom Risotto

 

 

 

 

Recipe by: foodnetwork.com

Ingredients:

  • 6 to 8 cups of chicken stock
  • 5 ounces dried mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 shallots
  • 2 cups Arborio rice
  • ½ cup white vermouth
  • 2/3 cup grated parmesan
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions:

1. Heat the stock and ladle 2 cups into a medium bowl.

2. Add dried mushrooms and let soak for 20 minutes, then drain, reserving the liquid. Pour liquid through a fine sieve lined with cheesecloth or paper towels to catch any grit. Add mushroom liquid back to warm stock. Keep stock heated over medium heat. Pat soaked mushrooms dry and saute in a large skillet with 1 tablespoon olive oil.

3. Heat remaining olive oil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and cook until softened.

4. Add rice and cook, stirring, until the rice becomes translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add vermouth and stir until absorbed by rice.

5. Add warm mushroom stock to rice, 1 cup at a time, stirring constantly. All stock must be fully absorbed before the next cup of stock is added. After about 20 minutes, the rice should be tender but not mushy, it should have a creamy texture. Add more stock if needed.

6. Fold in Sautéed mushrooms, Parmesan, and season with salt and pepper. Let stand for a minute before serving. Sprinkle with Parmesan, if desired.

Desserts

Everyone loves something sweet to finish off the perfect meal. These two recipes are classics that everyone is sure to love!

Yule Log

 

 

 

 

Recipe by: tasteofhome.com 

Ingredients:

  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 ounces of semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 1/3 cup water
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 can (16oz) milk chocolate frosting, divided
  • Large marshmallows
  • Baking cocoa

Instructions:

1. In a bowl, beat egg yolks, sugar and vanilla on high until thick and lemon-colored, about 5 minutes. Reduce speed to low; beat in chocolate and water until blended. Add flour and baking soda; mix well.

2. In another bowl, beat egg whites on high until stiff peaks form. Fold in the chocolate mixture. Spread evenly in a greased and floured 15x10x1-in. baking pan. Bake at 375° for 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, sprinkle a kitchen towel with confectioners’ sugar. Invert cake onto the towel. Starting from a short end, roll up cake in the towel. Place seam side down on a wire rack to cool completely. Unroll cake; spread coconut-pecan frosting to within 1 in. of edges; roll up cake without the towel. Cut and reserve a narrow diagonal slice from each end of the cake. Reserve 2 tablespoons chocolate frosting for mushrooms. Attach diagonal cake slices with a little of the frosting to opposite sides of cake with remaining frosting. With the tines of a fork, make strokes in the frosting to resemble bark on a tree trunk.

4. For the mushrooms, half marshmallows widthwise. Flatten half of each marshmallow for cap of mushroom; roll other half between palms of hands for stem. Attach caps to stems with the reserved frosting. Dust tops of mushrooms with cocoa; place around the log.

Yield: 8 servings.

Sugar Cookies

 

 

 

 

Recipe by: delish.com

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tbsp. milk

Instructions:

1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside.

2. Beat butter and sugar until fluffy and pale in color. Add egg, milk, and vanilla and beat until combined, then add flour mixture gradually until totally combined.

3. Shape into a disk and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate 1 hour.

4. When ready to roll, preheat oven to 350º. Lightly flour a clean work surface and roll out dough until 1/8” thick. Cut out shapes and transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets. Freeze 10 minutes (so your shapes hold while baking!).

5. Bake until edges are lightly golden, 8 to 10 minutes.

6. Transfer to a cooling rack.

7. Once cool, frost.