According resident party planner Colin Cowie, there is nothing more romantic or sexy than cooking for someone at home, and he stopped by The Early Show to prove it.
The Valentine's Day menu and decor suggestions are easy and inexpensive, says Cowie.
Colin transforms a kitchen space for Valentines using a little color of red. To start, he uses runners in red and simple glass cylinder vases filled with water -- adding red food coloring and floating candles to sets the mood. He also opts for red glasses, red plates, red napkins, and even red light bulbs. Around each dinner plate Cowie decorates with inexpensive red carnations (instead of the usual expensive Valentine flowers). Finishing off the tabletop are simple votive candles wrapped in red lighting gel. For a fun and sexy touch include games and or toys, like the Lovers Lotto Game or mini chalkboards for writing messages to you Valentine.
Cocktail: Passion Blitz
Starter: Poached Shrimp Served Up Martini Style Over Red Sauce
Entree: Lobster Linguini with Red Sauce
(Chicken/Mozzarella Cheese can be substituted)
Dessert: Chocolate Decadence Cake
(Note: The shrimp and lobster, as well as the sauces, can be store bought to save time and lessen prep work)
Passion Blitz Cocktail
1 1/4 cups champagne
3/4 cup raspberry juice
1/4 cup lime juice
Add all ingredients to shaker filled with ice and shake well. Add to chilled Champagne glass and garnish with fresh raspberries
Shrimp Appetizer Served Up Martini Style Over Red Sauce
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup vegetable oil
dash of Tabasco sauce
1 teaspoon brandy
2 tablespoon ketchup
juice of 1/2 of lemon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
To prepare the cocktail sauce, place the egg yolks and mustard in a mixing bowl and beat with a whisk. Gradually add the oil to the mixture, constantly whisking until it emulsifies to the consistency of mayonnaise. Add the Tabasco, brandy, ketchup, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and mix well. (The sauce can be stored in a covered glass container for up to a week.)
Lobster Linguini Entree with Red Sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 glove garlic, minced
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup white wine
4 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 teaspoon tomato paste
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 tablespoon shredded fresh basil leaves
Sauté onions in olive oil until lightly browned, add garlic, red pepper flakes and white wine. Stir in tomatoes and tomato paste. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook on high for approximately 10 minutes. Reduce heat to simmer for about 15 minutes. Set aside. In the meantime, prepare the pasta and lobster.
12 ounces linguine, cooked
2 lobster tails, shells removed and meat sliced into medallions
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon crushed garlic
pinch of saffron
Over high heat sauté lobster, garlic and saffron in olive oil and butter for 1 to 2 minutes, until cooked through and beginning to brown. Toss together lobster, tomato sauce and linguine. Add basil and serve.
Chocolate Decadence Cake Dessert
13 teaspoons plus 6 tablespoons sugar
8 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
3 large eggs
3 large egg yolks
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 dark or milk chocolate bar for shaving, best quality available
hot fudge sauce
Generously butter eight 3/4 cup souffle dishes or heart-shaped ramekins. Sprinkle inside of each with 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar. Stir chocolate and butter in heavy medium saucepan over low heat until smooth. Remove from heat.
Beat eggs, egg yolks and remaining 5 tablespoons sugar in large mixing bowl until thick and pale yellow, about 6 minutes. Fold 1/3 of warm chocolage mixture into egg mixture, then fold in remaining chocolate. Fold in flour. Divide batter among soufflé dishes. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover with plastic wrap; chill. Bring to room temperature before continuing.)
Preheat oven to 425F. Place soufflé dishes on baking sheet. Bake cakes uncovered until edges are puffed and slightly cracked but center 1-inch of each moves slightly when dishes are shaken gently, about 13 minutes.
Top each cake with dollop of whipped cream, hot fudge sauce and shaved chocolate.