contributed by Alana Littler
This Valentine’s Day, make your man’s heart melt with a meal that will have him hooked on you faster than you can introduce him as your new flame. These two simple recipes are so delicious, he’ll think you’ve been simmering and slaving all day. 1 meal, 2 pots, hey…he may even pop the question. Not that it’s even crossed your mind!
The Main Meal
Get his blood boiling with a pot of home-cooked chili brimming with all the fixings. The best part? Using this naturally low-cal combo of ground turkey, ground bison, creamy Greek yogurt and low-fat shredded cheese, he’ll be clamoring for seconds and you’ll look your sexiest when you slip into something more comfortable.
Just because you want to look your best later doesn’t mean you have to make him suffer (yet!). Indulge, even if it’s just a bite or two, in this delectable chocolate fondue with homemade pound cake and succulent strawberries. If this scrumptious trio makes it into the bedroom for a little late night snack, no one will blame you. And even if it’s your first date, what better way to test the chemistry than by feeding each other a little treat from across the table.
Make Him Melt Chili:
1 lb. ground turkey
1 lb. ground bison *
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
2 tbs chili powder
2 tbs cumin
1 tbs cayenne pepper
1 28-oz can diced tomatoes
1 14-oz can tomato sauce
¼ cup good red wine
1/8 cup brown sugar
1 can 14-oz black bean
1 can 14-oz kidney beans
1 can 14-oz pinto beans
salt and pepper to taste
2% shredded cheese (3 cheese blend)
2% Greek yogurt (creamier and holds consistency better than sour cream)
chives, chopped (reserve 4 spring tops for decorating)
Sauté onion in cast iron pot ** until translucent, add garlic, ground turkey, ground bison, 2 tbs chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, red wine, brown sugar and stir, simmering for 30 minutes. Then add all the beans (once strained well), salt and pepper, stir and simmer until beans are warm. Serve with toppings, and then add chive sprigs on top of Greek yogurt dollop. Sprinkle extra chives as needed.
Finger-Licking Chocolate Fondue
1 lb. fresh strawberries, cleaned, green tops on
1 1/4 cups whole milk or heavy cream
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 tbs unsalted butter
12 oz Ghirardelli Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips
2 tbs chocolate liqueur (optional)
In a medium saucepan, combine the milk, vanilla, and butter. Heat over medium heat until the mixture just simmers. Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate chips and liqueur until completely melted and smooth. Pour into fondue pot***, making sure chocolate stays warm, not hot.
Follow any boxed pound cake recipe, or, for homemade pound cake:
1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter, plus more for pan (use
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
3 cups sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
1/2 tsp fine salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. With a mixer, cream butter and shortening together. Add sugar, a little at a time. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating after each addition. Stir dry ingredients together in a bowl and add to mixer alternately with milk, starting with the flour and ending with the flour. Mix in vanilla. Pour into a greased and floured tube pan and bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
Cut Pound cake into bite sized pieces. Assemble cake and strawberries in martini glasses or small bowls, pierce with fondue forks, or regular forks, and dip into chocolate.
* Cook’s Note: Bison is much more flavorful than typical beef, but if you can’t find it, use grass fed ground beef
** Cook’s Note: If you don’t have a cast iron pot, just use a regular 6 qt pot
*** Cook’s Note: If you don’t have a fondue pot, just create your own double boiler. Place the melted chocolate in a metal or other heatproof bowl over a smaller saucepan of simmering water that will keep the fondue warm, but not hot.