Since my family was visiting us this past week, Mike and I decided to wait until Saturday to celebrate Valentine's Day. We do the same thing every year, get the kids to bed, open a bottle of champagne, and have caviar and blini. It's much more fun than going out in the cold for an overpriced dinner.
Mike does a great deal of driving for his job, he averages 900 miles a week. So when the weekend comes, I try to avoid work talk, which is pretty much unavoidable. Although this past Friday ended on a great note, we found out what our tax refund is going to be, and Mike is finally getting a decent bonus for all his hard work. And because of that, Mike said he wanted to get a new TV for the living room, and I can finally get......a Garmin!!! So if anyone has any suggestions for me as I start shopping for one, let me know.
Now back to our meal, Mike went to Wegman's for the caviar, and brought home some other surprises. We started off with brie stuffed dates, with a drizzle of balsamic syrup. They were very rich, I could only eat one. Mike uses Ina Garten's recipe for blini, they always come out great, he made a shamrock shaped one just for kicks. I love caviar, and we paired it with creme fraiche, which I could eat like ice cream. We also had a few king crab legs, they were so sweet that you didn't even need butter. Of course there was chocolate for dessert, I ate them before I took a picture (big surprise), they were the perfect portion, about the size of a tall shot glass. We shared one in chocolate, the other coffee. Well, I kind of shared.
Here is the recipe for the blini, the recipe calls for a stick of butter, but you can get away with using a 1/4 of a stick:
1/3 cup buckwheat flour
2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk
1 extra large egg
1 stick of clarified butter *we didn't clarify it this time, and only used 1/4 stick
Combine flours, baking powder and salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg, milk and 1 tablespoon butter. Then whisk into flour.
Heat a tablespoon of butter in a saute pan, when hot, drop batter in the skillet, one tablespoon at a time.
Once bubbles form at the top of the blini (about 2 minutes), flip over and cook one more minute. Wipe the pan down with a paper towel, and repeat the process.
Top with whatever you like, Ina pairs them with smoked salmon and creme fraiche in her Barefoot in Paris Cookbook, one of my faves.