Sunday, February 14, 2010

Valentine's Day The Food Hunter Way

My hubby and I don't "do" Valentine's Day.  It's just something we never did and I can't imagine we ever will.   So instead of celebrating this weekend with dinner at an overcrowded restaurant featuring an overpriced fixed menu we stayed at home.  We invited some friends over; opened a few good bottles of wine; cooked up a bunch of yummy appetizers; some beef cheek ravioli's and topped off the evening with molten lava cakes.

There was no mushy I love you's or flowers or heart shaped boxes of chocolates.  Just some good friends; good food; and good times.

Happy Valentine's Day!!


Beef Cheek Ravioli
adapted from Mario Batali; Babbo
 Extra-virgin olive oil 3 Tbsp.
White onion, diced 1
Celery stalk, diced 1/2
Beef cheeks or beef brisket, c 2 lb.
Red wine 2 cups
Fresh tomatoes, chopped 1 cup
Fresh rosemary, chopped 1 tsp.
Pasta dough 1 1/2 lb.
Kosher salt 2 Tbsp.
Unsalted butter 2 cups
Chicken Livers, Toscani recipe follows
Black truffles, sliced 2 Tbsp.
Flat-leaf parsley, chopped 1/2 cup
Pecorino-Romano cheese, grated 1/2 cup

1. Heat olive oil in skillet; sauté onion and celery over low heat
until soft but not brown. Increase heat and add beef; cook to brown.
Add wine; bring to boil, then add tomatoes and rosemary. Place,
covered, in 400F oven for 1 hour.

2. Cool, skim excess fat and purée meat in food processor.

3. Roll out dough using pasta machine on thinnest setting; cut sheets
into 4-in. squares. Place 1 Tbsp. meat filling in center of each
square; fold to create triangle.

4. Cook pasta in 6 qt. salted water.

5. In large sauté pan, heat butter over high heat until it browns. Add
Chicken Livers Toscani and cook 1 min. Add few tablespoons pasta water
to create emulsion; add truffles and cook 1 minute.

6. Add pasta to sauté pan with half of parsley and half of cheese and
gently toss. Garnish with parsley and remaining cheese.
Chicken Livers Toscani
Chicken livers 1 lb.
Extra-virgin olive oil 7 oz.
Red onion, finely chopped 1
Capers 2 Tbsp.
Salt-packed anchovy fillets, 2
Red chile flakes 1 Tbsp.
Red wine 1 cup
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Saute chicken livers, olive oil, onion, capers, anchovies and chile
flakes. Add wine; cook until almost evaporated.

2. Process mixture in food processor; season with salt and pepper.

Updated: I'm submitting this to Presto Pasta night over at Mrs Ergul Passion for Life and Food
Please stop by tomorrow to see all of the great submissions.


  1. Staying home is the way to go! We did the same. I stopped at a bakery/dinner to pick up dessert and couldn't believe all the crazy people waiting for a table.

  2. V-Day should definitely be about the good food...homemade being the only REAL way to go. Everything looks quite delicious and way more interesting than anything I've had at a restaurant recently!

  3. You are such a great cook. It is so nice to see traditional Italian cooking here! :) I think your way of celebrating sounds just fine! :) Ciao..

  4. We stayed home and made ravioli too! I have to agree it's a much better way to spend the evening. Your ravioli looks tasty!

  5. Now that's the perfect way to celebrate! What perfect ravioli!

  6. beef cheek ravioli sounds so perfect - thanks for the recipe.

  7. Cheers to you! Staying at home and enjoying a good meal with good wine and friends-awesome! It does not get any better.

  8. I couldn't agree more. It's wonderful to spend time with friends and family over a great meal and yours looks awesome.

    Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights.

  9. That sounds like the perfect way to spend Valentine's Day since that means good food and not overpriced drivel at insanely busy restaurants! This sounds and looks absolutely divine! I didn't even think to use shredded beef brisket but I bet that would taste so good. Definitely a recipe I'm bookmarking to make :)

  10. That sounds delicious!I love to stay home on valentine's day ,too!