Your Quick Guide to the Perfect Valentine's Meal at Home

At home you can create the ideal ambiance and a picture-perfect main course.

Unless you feel like fighting crazy crowds just to sit at a cramped table to overpay for a less-than-perfect meal, it is probably a good idea to spend Valentine's Day at home. That way, you can create the ideal ambiance and a picture-perfect main course. Here is your guide to putting together a Valentine's Day evening that will stay in your memories for years to come. 

Plan the Menu

The food is the star of the show, so you better get it right. First, make it all about your loved one. Choose his/her favorites and really make them shine (even if you would be fine if you never ate the dish for your entire life). However, there are a few foods that are better left in the cupboard for your romantic evening: garlic and onions (lead to terrible breath), spinach (way too easy to get stuck in your teeth), and anything really messy. Creating your own surf and turf is one way for you to really wow your honey. For the finishing touch, place a couple of shrimp on top of the steak in the shape of a heart. And don't forget to bake (or buy) an unforgettable, yet not-too-filling, dessert. Choose whatever you want, but remember that chocolate is an aphrodisiac. 

Make or buy an unforgettable dessert.  

Set the Mood

The tablescape is the first impression of your evening, so you want to get the tone right. Aim for something simple so it doesn't come across as cheesy. Black and white, accented by red, makes for a very sophisticated appearance that just screams romance. For example, start with a white tablecloth, and then add black placemats and red cloth napkins. Pull out the fine china and scatter a few rose petals for the finishing touch. To guarantee an intimate ambiance, set up a centerpiece of pillar candles of varying heights. You can stop at three candles, or, if your table allows, gather seven or nine for an impressive display.

Finish It off Right

Delicious meal? Check. Amazing ambiance? Check. Now it's time to cover the little details. First off, you need to create some mood music. You can do this by putting together your own playlist with all of your favorite melodies, or just look for a smooth moves music channel via your favorite radio app. 

Don't forget the gift!

But you didn't think you were going to get away without a gift, did you? Sure, you could opt for something expected, like chocolates or a necklace, but something from the heart will provide more meaning than anything you can buy. One idea is to find a decorative box and then type up (double spaced) 100 reasons you love your better half. Cut each idea into its own strip of paper, fold them, and place them into the box to create a treasured gift for years to come.

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