I hosted a dinner party on Valentine’s Day. I made it super easy on myself and served a casserole, roasted vegetables and salad. I don’t think friends minded or even noticed that the food was simple and comforting. It’s most fun just to be together, right? Besides, as long as the dessert is killer, who remembers what the main meal is.
My table was so pretty – all my best china, silverware and stemware. Bonus – I used my red Christmas chargers and they were the perfect Valentine touch. Red candles, roses, fun love quotes scattered around. Oh, and lots of wine and beer….. (secret to a great party!) Pandora station: Bossa nova … check it out – my new addiction.
Another great success of my party was the special wine my friend Dawn brought. She actually researched both a white and red to enhance a chicken casserole. We loved our mini wine tasting during the meal….and especially loved the dessert wine – a delicious Moscato d’Asti.
Here’s my menu – I’ll share recipes!
Hors d’oeuvres: Lemon Ginger Shrimp, Cheese Straws, store bought olives and marinated mushrooms
Main Course: Cheesy Chicken Casserole, Roasted asparagus and carrots, Romaine Salad with lemony dressing (I rarely serve dinner rolls)
Dessert: Lemon Cheesecake with Lemon Curd and German Chocolate Nutty Pie (made by my friend Laura and totally perfect!)
Here’s what you need: (I adapted this from a few recipes I researched on allrecipes.com)
2-3 lbs jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
¼ C olive oil
2 t sesame oil
¼ C lemon juice
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and minces
¼ C fresh cilantro
1 t paprika
Here’s what you do:
Prepare the shrimp and set aside. Mix the remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor. Pour over the raw shrimp and marinate for 2 hours (no longer though). Grill the shrimp over medium heat, allowing some of the thick marinade to cling to the shrimp. I skewered mine after I grilled them. But you could skewer them first, I imagine, and have equal success. Never overcook shrimp! Just till pink – then they’re done!