Heat Things Up In The Kitchen For Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day is right around the corner...chocolate, flowers and gifts are all apart of the usual but why not do something outside of the box and make a special dinner at home?

Chef Shanel Dewalt owner of Dine Indulgence and Sous Chef at Great Lakes Culinary Center shows us how to make a perfect Valentine's Day Meal!

See the recipes below! 

Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

8 cups bite-size cauliflower florets (about 1 head)
4 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
⅓ cup Heavy Cream

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon Butter

½ teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste


Place cauliflower florets and garlic in a steamer basket over boiling water, cover and steam until very tender, 12 to 15 minutes. (Alternatively, place florets and garlic in a microwave-safe bowl with ¼ cup water, cover and microwave on High for 3 to 5 minutes.) Place the cooked cauliflower and garlic in a food processor. Add heavy cream, 2 teaspoons oil, butter, salt and pepper; pulse several times, then process until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a serving bowl.


Sautéed Chicken Breast

  • 2-3 Pounds Chicken Breast
  • 1 tablespoon thyme, Chopped finely
  • 1 tablespoon Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Butter
  • Salt & Pepper To taste


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Season Chicken with salt, pepper, and thyme. Sauté both side in oil and butter about 3-4 minutes per side until it is golden brown. Transfer to oven to finish cooking, about 10-15 mins. Save Chicken Drippings.


Lemon Butter Sauce

  • 2 tbsp . Butter
  • 1 Clove Garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp . All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 c . Chicken Broth
  • 1-2 Lemon, zest and juice
  • 1 tsp . Fresh Thyme
  • 3 tbsp Chicken Drippings
  • Kosher Salt and Black Pepper, to taste

Melt butter in a medium saucepan and add the garlic. Saute for 1 minute, then whisk in the flour forming a roux. Gradually add in the chicken broth, whisking as your pouring so as not to form lumps. Next, add in the lemon zest and juice, chives, and thyme. Bring to a boil then allow to simmer for 5 minutes until slightly thickened. Season with salt and pepper.


Butternut Squash Au Gratin

  • 1 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 1 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, washed and sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons thyme, picked
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cups grated gruyere
  • 1 cup Asiago
  • 1 cup Parmesan

Panko Topping

  • 1 tablespoon Chopped Parsley
  • 1 tablespoon Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 tablespoon Butter
  • 1 cup of Panko Breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 425°F, and prepare a 9x9 baking dish with butter.
In a bowl, toss together butternut squash slices with olive oil, salt, pepper and 2 tablespoon of thyme. In another bowl, toss together Yukon Gold potatoes with olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Set aside.
In a pot, heat milk,1 tablespoon of thyme, cream and butter to a simmer. Set aside.
Begin layering gratin, starting with a 1/4 cup of cream mixture, followed by a layer of squash, a handful of gruyere and a sprinkling of cheese mixture. Repeat alternating layers of squash and potatoes, finishing the top with extra cheese and a sprinkling of thyme.
Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Check doneness with a paring knife or toothpick in the middle. Mix ingredients for Panko Topping together. Remove foil and cook another 10 minutes until golden and bubbly. Sprinkle Panko mixture evenly on top  and cook until golden brown , about 10 minutes.