Wednesday, January 31, 2007

A Happy Heart

It's just a couple of weeks away: Valentine's Day. Whether you love the holiday or hate it, you still deserve a good meal that day.

I'm partial to eating in to avoid the crowds. There are plenty of wonderful ideas online for romantic meals. For example, Vegetarians in Paradise offers two complete menus, with recipes at http://www.vegparadise.com/cookingwith62.html and http://www.vegparadise.com/cookingwith52.html

For even more ideas, the Vegetarian Society of Britain has a menus and recipes at http://www.vegsoc.org/cordonvert/valmeal.html and http://www.vegsoc.org/cordonvert/lovers99.html

Those saucy Brits also have information on "The Food of Love," about the aphrodisiac qualities of vegetarian foods at http://www.vegsoc.org/cordonvert/forget.html

The Vegetarian Resource Group has "Recipes for Valentine’s Day" at http://www.vrg.org/press/99janvalentine.htm This one sounds both delightful and super-easy:

ROSE-SCENTED RASPBERRY MOUSSE
(Serves 4)

Rose water can be found in gourmet stores or the gourmet section of your market. Orange-flower water would also work nicely in this tart, refreshing dessert.

One 10-ounce package frozen raspberries, thawed
2 Tablespoons rose water
One 12.3-ounce package lowfat firm tofu, drained

Drain raspberries. Reserve several raspberries and about a tablespoon of juice. In blender or food processor, combine raspberries, remaining juice, rose water, and tofu. Process until smooth.
Divide mixture into four dessert dishes. Refrigerate several hours or overnight, until thoroughly chilled. Just prior to serving, garnish with reserved raspberries and then drizzle a little juice over the top of each dish.

Recipe by Mary Clifford, published in Vegetarian Journal, P.O. Box 1463, Baltimore, MD 21203.

The nutritional breakdown sounds like this mousse will keep your Valentine's heart healthy, too:
Total calories per serving: 65
Fat: 1 gram
Carbohydrates: 9 grams
Protein: 6 grams
Sodium: 55 mg
Fiber: 3 grams

But for some, only a nice dinner out will do. So I’m asking for suggestions -- Do you know of any romantic restaurants in this area where vegetarian valentines can dine to their hearts’ content?

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