A Valentine's Day feast on a budget

Daniel Neman, St. Louis Post-Dispatch on

Published in Entertaining

1. In a small bowl, mix together butter, blue cheese and parsley until thoroughly combined. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

2. Cook steak to desired doneness. Allow to rest 5 minutes. Serve with 1 slice of compound butter on top of each portion of warm steak.

Per serving: 295 calories; 14 g fat; 7 g saturated fat; 123 mg cholesterol; 38 g protein; 1 g carbohydrate; no sugar; no fiber; 146 mg sodium; 74 mg calcium


Yield: 2 servings

2 eggs

1 1/2 tablespoons mayonnaise

1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

Salt and pepper

Paprika, optional

1. Fill a medium bowl halfway with ice and water, and set aside. Bring 1 inch of water or more to a boil in a pot that can fit a steamer. When it boils, place the eggs in the steamer in the pot, cover and steam for 14 minutes. Remove the eggs and immediately plunge into the ice water. When they are cool, they can be peeled and used immediately or kept in the shell in the refrigerator for several days.

2. Slice the eggs in half lengthwise and scoop out the yolks into a small bowl. Add mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice and a pinch of salt and pepper; mix with a fork until smooth. Return mixture to egg whites. Serve with a sprinkle of paprika, for color and romance, if desired.

Per serving: 147 calories; 13 g fat; 3 g saturated fat; 190 mg cholesterol; 7 g protein; 2 g carbohydrate; 1 g sugar; 1 g fiber; 246 mg sodium; 33 mg calcium


Yield: 2 servings

1 large Russet potato

Vegetable oil


1. Peel potato and cut into bite-size pieces. Pour 2 inches of oil into a medium or large pot and bring to a temperature of 220 degrees. Add all the potato pieces to the oil and cook, stirring frequently, until pale golden brown, about 20 to 30 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to drain on paper towels, and refrigerate at least 30 minutes. Do not discard oil.

2. Bring oil to a temperature of 350 degrees (don’t worry if it is cloudy before reheating). Working in batches, add potatoes and cook, stirring frequently, until golden brown and crispy, about 3 or 4 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to paper towels and sprinkle generously with salt. Cook the other batch or batches the same way. Serve hot or warm.

Per serving: 263 calories; 14 g fat; 11 g saturated fat; no cholesterol; 4 g protein; 33 g carbohydrate; 1 g sugar; 2 g fiber; 345 mg sodium; 25 mg calcium



Yield: 2 servings; with enough blue cheese dressing for 6 servings

1/2 small iceberg lettuce

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup blue cheese, crumbled

1/4 cup whole milk

1 tablespoon sour cream

11/2 teaspoons lemon juice

Dash Worcestershire sauce

1/4 teaspoon salt

Black pepper

1. Cut the lettuce into 2 wedges.

2. In a small bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, blue cheese, milk, sour cream, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper to taste until smooth with still some chunks of blue cheese. Serve wedges of lettuce with 2 tablespoons of dressing over each one.

Per serving: 157 calories; 16 g fat; 4 g saturated fat; 14 mg cholesterol; 2 g protein; 2 g carbohydrate; 1 g sugar; 1 g fiber; 298 mg sodium; 50 mg calcium

Adapted from the Food Network


Yield: 2 servings

4 ounces chocolate chips, about 1/2 cup

1/2 cup half-and-half or heavy cream

Place chocolate chips in a small bowl. Heat half-and-half or cream until very hot but not boiling (it’s OK to boil the heavy cream). Pour half-and-half or cream into bowl with chocolate, allow to stand 1 minute and stir until smooth and uniform in color. Set aside for 10 minutes or so before pouring over ice cream. If sauce is too thick to pour, stir in a little more hot cream.

Per serving (using half-and-half, not including ice cream): 223 calories; 16 g fat; 10 g saturated fat; 22 mg cholesterol; 4 g protein; 36 g carbohydrate; 32 g sugar; 4 g fiber; 25 mg sodium; 60 mg calcium