Rolling with what’s on hand for a Successful Valentine’s Day Meal

Sometimes you just have to roll with it and go with the flow…

Are you the kind of person who:

  1. follows recipes exactly
  2. uses the recipe as a guide
  3. doesn’t use recipes at all

I fall into the all of these categories, depending on my mood and what I have on hand.

For Valentine’s Day, I had every intention of preparing the Heart Healthy Mediterranean meal, from appetizer to dessert, which was featured on my newsletter this month, but I soon realized that I had not purchased all of the ingredients and I was running short on time! Time to punt!

Oh, how delicious the balsamic vinegar and pomegranate juice reduction would have been on the appetizer (if I would have had pomegranate juice), but instead I served a classic caprese salad with fresh basil from my herb garden, topped with Mrs. Dash Herb Blend. A stellar way to start the special meal for my sweetheart!

The Baked Salmon with Fresh Vegetables was close to the recipe, but without mushrooms, I forged ahead. I left the sea salt out and added more flavor by adding fresh cilantro and fresh oregano from my herb garden. My date of 33 years was ecstatic when he tasted that flavorful fish!

Alas, not a grain of wild rice in my pantry, so I served roasted sliced sweet potatoes brushed with olive oil and sprinkled with fresh rosemary (yes, from my garden;) My date was delighted with the savory burst of flavor the rosemary gave the natural sweet taste of the sweet potato.

I happened to have one of my honey’s favorite veggies on hand, Brussels sprouts, so I decided to balance the strong flavor of these mini cabbages with a something sweet, like fresh basil, from my herb garden, of course, topped with extra virgin olive oil. My darling husband was very impressed with this new way to serve a favorite veggie.

Yes, I used both virgin and extra virgin olive oil in this meal because we love the flavor and this was a Mediterranean Diet menu!

Now I’m just stalling because there was no Date and Walnut drops for dessert with this meal. However, there WAS dark chocolate! I always keep a bar of 60-80% dark chocolate which I cut up into about one inch squares for my after- dinner treat…. Green & Black organic, Godiva or Ghirardelli works for me. I arranged a few chocolate squares into the shape of a heart and added a sprig of fresh mint, from my herb garden, to conclude a brilliant meal that was so good and good for us!

Are you keeping the basics of the Mediterranean diet on hand for yummy and healthy meals? Do you use olive oil to cook with or as a topping? Have you considered getting a vertical garden to grow your favorite herbs? Let me know if any of this makes sense to you… AND, how you roll when it comes to recipes.

Contact me if you are interested in learning more about how I can help you achieve your health goals.