Recipes by David Vartanian, Vintage Press  I  Photos by Taylor Johnson

 

W

ith Valentine’s Day just a couple of weeks away, you’re probably already thinking about where you’ll want to eat (even if it is to go). A delicious meal prepared by a skilled chef, plus no cleanup … that has our vote! But if culinary creativity and a little mess in your own kitchen doesn’t intimidate you, we’ve got just the thing. Well, the Vintage Press’ owner/chef, David Vartanian, has just the thing: a romantic, gourmet, at-home meal for two with a lot of … heart!

Sweetheart Steak With Chimichurri

Steak

Ingredients

  • 1 32-ounce Spencer steak, butterflied
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 shallot, peeled and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 3/4 cup red wine
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Directions

  • Rub the steak with salt and pepper.
  • Place in a bowl and add the chopped shallot, garlic, thyme, red wine and oil.
  • Mix well and marinate for at least one hour.
  • Grill the steak over a hot fire.
  • Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.
  • Remove the meat from the grill.
  • Spoon chimichurri (next recipe) over steak and serve.

Chimichurri Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (packed) fresh Italian parsley
  • 1 cup (packed) fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • Salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Directions

  • Combine parsley, cilantro, white wine vinegar, oregano, garlic and crushed red pepper in a food processor.
  • Add olive oil and puree until smooth.
  • Season with salt and pepper.

Winter Citrus Salad with Goat Cheese

Citrus Salad

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces assorted salad greens
  • 1 large Cara Cara orange, peeled and sectioned
  • 1 grapefruit, peeled and sectioned
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese

Citrus Vinaigrette

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces assorted salad greens
  • 1 large Cara Cara orange, peeled and sectioned
  • 1 grapefruit, peeled and sectioned
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese

Directions

  • In a medium saucepan, bring orange juice to a boil.
  • Lower to a simmer and reduce until
  • 1/3 cup remains.
  • Allow to cool, then combine orange juice, shallots, thyme, balsamic vinegar and orange zest.
  • Slowly whisk in extra virgin oil until blended.
  • Season with salt and pepper, refrigerate.
  • Mix all salad ingredients in a bowl and toss with citrus vinaigrette.

Chocolate Hearts with Raspberry Puree

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
  • 4 clear acetate strips (1 inch x 11 inches)
  • 4 paper clips
  • 5 ounces sweetened berry puree
  • Chocolate mousse
  • Cocoa for dusting
  • Mint leaves for garnish

Directions

  • Brush one side of the clear strips with a thin coat of melted chocolate.
  • Bring the two ends of the strip together, making sure that the side coated with the chocolate is on the inside.
  • Hold the ends together with a paper clip (the shape should resemble a teardrop).
  • Place the teardrops on end so that they stand up.
  • Refrigerate until the chocolate hardens.
  • Remove the clip and carefully peel off the acetate strip.
  • Fill up the center with chocolate mousse.
  • Dust with powdered cocoa.
  • Place two teardrops side by side in the center of a dish and garnish with berry puree and fresh mint.

Wild Mushrooms with Puff Pastry

Puff Pastry

Ingredients

  • 1 pound flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1 pound sweet butter

Directions

  • In a food processor, combine the flour, salt and 4 ounces of the butter.
  • Process until the mixture resembles fine meal.
  • With the machine running, pour the water into the bowl until a ball forms.
  • Turn out onto a work surface and, with a rolling pin, roll the dough into a rectangle.
  • Put the remaining butter in the middle of the dough and wrap the dough around the butter like a package.
  • Roll the dough and butter out into a rectangle, about 12 inches by 18 inches.
  • Starting with the 12-inch side, fold the dough into thirds.
  • Turn the dough so that the seam is on your right and roll the dough again into a rectangle.
  • Sprinkle the work surface with flour as necessary to prevent sticking.
  • Brush excess flour off the dough before and after folding.
  • Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes and roll out again. Repeat the procedure four more times for a total of six turns.
  • Refrigerate the dough overnight.
  • Remove the pastry from the refrigerator and let it soften slightly before rolling.
  • At this point, cut the pastry into heart shapes and bake in a 475-degree oven for 5 minutes.
  • Reduce the heat to 350 degrees and bake an additional 30 minutes or until the pastry shapes are crisp and cooked throughout.

Wild Mushrooms

Ingredients

  • 1 3-inch heart-shaped baked puff pastry
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/3 pounds mushrooms (oyster, chanterelle, shiitake or portobello)
  • Salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 ounce cognac
  • 1 teaspoon fresh chives, tarragon or basil
  • Juice of half a small lemon
  • 1 teaspoon sweet butter, softened

Directions

  • Saute the mushrooms in the oil with the chopped shallots until soft.
  • Plate and top with shaped puff pastry to serve.