Savor Olympics, an evening at home with poutine

Some women may consider it rank heresy to cook their own Valentine’s Day meal. I’m not one of those.

Sure, I’m all for giving hard-working home cooks a night off, myself included. But a night when everyone else dines out doesn’t always deliver in the romance department. Give me a birthday, catching-up-with-friends, TGIF or just-because restaurant meal any day.

That’s why I’ve cooked up a tradition in the past two years of preparing my husband’s favorite meal for Valentine’s Day. If this sounds like just another day of drudgery in the kitchen, I should confess that I make most of the weekly menu decisions, so the plan actually is a treat for him — and usually isn’t all that difficult for me.

This year, Will chose steak and fries. I tacked on escargot to elevate the celebratory mood. While we rarely have escargot, they’re not expensive nor difficult to make.

I covered the process in a previous post but need to make one update: Allyson’s Kitchen no longer carries a solitary can of escargot. I would have had to buy about a dozen snail shells with them, so I purchased the same brand sans shells at Albertsons.

I could have gone all out and cut my own fries from fresh potatoes and fried them, but Will was wowed enough with a homemade aioli to accompany frozen fries crisped in the oven. Any vehicle to get the aioli from hand to mouth is my motto. Will must have agreed.  

It certainly could be worse. For our continued Winter Olympics viewing, I’m considering whipping up a batch of Canada’s national dish, poutine, with some sweet-potato fries still in the freezer.

Beloved in its native Quebec, poutine is simply crispy fries covered with meaty gravy and cheese curds. In Vancouver, some multi-ethinic eateries top the fries with vegetable curry and paneer, an Indian cheese. Call it the ultimate in guilty-pleasure food to soak up an evening’s alcohol consumption.

At the rate we’re going, we may have a contender for Valentine’s Day 2011.

Poutine, Canda's national dish

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    Sarah Lemon

    Sarah Lemon covers the Rogue Valley’s food scene with an enthusiasm that rivals her love of cooking. Her blog mixes culinary musings and milestones with tips and recipes you won’t find in the Mail Tribune’s weekly A la Carte section. When ... Read Full
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