Meal Ideas: A Heart Healthy Valentine's Dinner

posted Feb 13, 2011, 10:12 PM by College Gloss   [ updated Mar 31, 2011, 11:49 AM by Stephany F. ]
We may be on Valentine's overload here, but luckily for those of you sick of hearing about V-day, it ends tonight.  If you're still searching for ideas on what to do, try these healthy Valentine's Day meal ideas.

Valentine's Day is a time to indulge. This meal proves that the indulgence can be healthy while also bringing a spark of romance to this special day. Another bonus: It's simple to cook, leaving more time to enjoy each others company. Fall in love with this nutritious meal and enjoy a heart healthy meal.

Light the candles and begin with an antioxidant rich salad...

Cranberry Walnut Spinach Salad Drizzled with Balsamic Vinaigrette

Spinach (1 bag)
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup dried cranberries
½ cup Feta cheese crumbles
Balsamic Vinagrette

Wash the spinach, then toss all the ingredients together.   Drizzle with desired amount of balsamic vinaigrette dressing.

Now the for the delectable main course...

Chicken Parmesan for Two
(Modified from Spark Recipes)

2 egg whites
1/3 cup Italian seasoned whole wheat bread crumbs
4 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
½ lb chicken breast
1 cup organic pasta sauce
4 oz. whole grain pasta

Beat the egg whites. Mix breadcrumbs and 2 tbsp of Parmesan cheese in pie plate. Dip chicken breasts in
egg white and then into breadcrumbs. Make sure to coat both sides. Bake chicken at 400*F for about 12
minutes on each side. The chicken should no longer be pink and the breading should be golden brown.
Prepare pasta while chicken is baking and warm pasta sauce. Place warm pasta (2 oz per serving) with
baked chicken breasts (4oz per serving). Top with sauce (½ cup per serving) and remaining Parmesan
cheese. Bon appetite!

And last but not least, dessert, because every meal should end with something sweet!

Decadent Chocolate Souffle

(Modified from A Healthy Kitchen)

Cooking spray
4 ½ tbsp granulated sugar, divided
1 tbsp all purpose flour
1 ½ tbsp Dutch process cocoa
2 tbsp fat-free milk
¼ tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg white
1 tsp powdered sugar

Preheat over to 350 degrees. Cover 2 (6 oz.) ramekins with cooking spray and sprinkle each with ¾ tsp
granulated sugar. Combine 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, flour, cocoa, and milk in a small saucepan
over medium heat. Cook 2 minutes and stir until smooth. Spoon the chocolate mixture into a medium
bowl and cool for 4 minutes. Stir in vanilla. Place egg white in a medium bowl and beat with a mixer
on high speed until soft peaks form. Add remaining 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon at
a time and beat until stiff peaks form. Gently stir ¼ of egg white mixture into chocolate mixture and
gently fold in remaining egg white mixture. Spoon mixture into prepared dishes. Tap dishes 2 or 3
times to level. Place dishes on baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until puffy. Sprinkle
each souffle with ½ teaspoon powdered sugar. Take a bite into chocolate bliss!

To top off the meal while relaxing together, try a cup of peppermint tea! Known for its stress reducing
effects, peppermint tea is the perfect conclusion to your special meal.

Love and food go hand in hand, so enjoy heart healthy foods on Valentine's day and remember what
George Bernard Shaw simply stated, “there is no love sincerer than the love of food.”

By:  Maggie Young
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