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11 menu and celebration ideas for a Galentine’s Day at home

Dinner and a movie 'Sleepless in Seattle' menu
Photo credit: MakeItGrateful.com

Galentine’s Day is near, and your Galentine’s Day dinner menu is here! We’ve rounded up our favorite recipes — from appetizers, to desserts and drinks — that are perfect for a day of celebrating your closest friends.

Never heard of Galentine’s Day? Let us fill you in. It is the most fun, female-only day of the year. Invented over a decade ago by Leslie Knope, the main character on the sitcom Parks and Recreation, as a day for women to get together and celebrate “ovaries before brovaries.” Held on Feb. 13, Galentine’s Day gives you and your gal pals a day to honor females and friendship, talk about personal goals and challenges, and laud the victories and dreams come true.

Invite your closest gal pals over and throw a Galentine’s Day party. Make it an all-day affair by getting your girls in the kitchen to help you make each and every one of these amazing Galentine’s Day recipes.

Appetizers

Tuna tartare

Elegance is the theme for this love and friendship-centered holiday. Start your Galentine’s Day meal with our tuna tartare on homemade crackers. Made with fresh-from-the-sea sushi-grade tuna, this sway-inducing appetizer is punctuated with ginger, wasabi, serrano, lime and sesame flavors. Diced cucumber, parsley and chives add a refreshing component that makes you want to keep nibbling one tuna-loaded cracker after another. Your ladies will beg you for this Galentine’s appetizer recipe — we suggest printing it out on cardstock and handing out the cards.

ALSO TRY: 12 romantic dinner & a movie options for Valentine’s Day

Elegant hot crab dip

This elegant hot crab dip will have your gal pals divided on which Galentine’s Day appetizer is the best. On par with the tuna tartare, warm scoops of hot crab dip will elicit sighs of satisfaction. This addictive dip is crazy-easy to prepare. Toss the ingredients together in a skillet to cook and marry the flavors, then transfer to an oven-safe serving dish, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and broil until lightly browned. Unlike traditional crab dips that are heavy on the cream cheese, ours is thick with real crab and just the right amount of onion, tarragon, cayenne and cream to make it a wonderfully rich and flavorful dish.


Main course

Salmon yakisoba

Featuring succulent fillets of salmon, stir-fried Asian vegetables, Japanese noodles and juicy blood orange slices, this captivating main course meal will be the talk of the table. The bright colors garner instant attention, but it’s the combination of tastes and textures that will have your ladies hooked. As a bonus, you can tell them that in addition to serving them a sumptuous dish, you loaded their meal with power foods — salmon, vegetables and blood oranges — because ladies need to look after each other’s health and well-being.

5D4B1766 - Salmon Yakisoba with Blood Oranges

Chicken mignon with harissa butter

Our chicken mignon with harissa butter features boneless, skinless pieces of chicken lusciously wrapped with bacon and topped with a spicy compound butter made with harissa paste. Chicken can taste and look so plain Jane, but when dressed up with a sizzling slice of bacon and lush melted butter, it becomes the most dazzling dish on the menu. Your hungry friends will love the smoky flavor from the bacon and the surprising kick of heat from the harissa.

Braised tri-tip

Your girls will feast their eyes on this braised tri-tip, then groan with satisfaction as they devour bite after bite of juicy meat and the accompanying honey-roasted carrots and parsnips. This is a Galentine’s Day main course meal that sticks to your ribs and satisfies your inner meat-eating beast. Though tri-tip is a tougher cut of meat, braising it in a lip-smacking delicious liquid made with French onion soup mix, onion, thyme and bay leaves magically transforms the beef into a mouthwateringly moist and juicy treat. You’ll swoon over the deep meaty flavor and the sweetly caramelized root vegetables. This is a meal that your friends will drool over and remember.

Braised Tri-Tip with Honey-Roasted Carrots & Parsnips (c) Rebecca Sanabr...
Photo credit: Rebecca Sanabria

Side dish

Smoked salmon potato cakes

Your Galentine’s Day side dishes should be as memorable as your main course. Serve these smoked salmon potato cakes and your ladies will be crazy-excited to dig right in. You make the potato cakes with shredded potatoes and cook them to crispy-golden perfection in a skillet. To serve, you top each potato cake with smoked salmon, fresh arugula, chives and a sprinkling of crushed pink peppercorns. Set this eye-catching side dish in front of your friends and they may momentarily consider skipping the entreés.

5D4B4866 - Smoked Salmon Potato Cakes

ALSO TRY: 6 menu and celebration ideas for a family Valentine’s Day at home

Chargrilled oysters

Serve your gal pals a Galentine’s Day side of chargrilled oysters and y’all will start planning a girls-only Gulf Coast vacation. Chargrilling these mouthwatering mollusks will become your favorite way to chow down on a regional Southern delicacy. Intimidated by cooking oysters over the flame? Put your big girl pants on and fire up your grill. This recipe is easy! Cook the oysters in the half-shell on the hottest part of the grill and douse them with a garlicky oyster sauce, then sprinkle with cheese and move them to a serving plate. Serve the oysters with more garlicky oyster sauce. Be warned: You and your friends will become instantly obsessed.

Rusty's chargrilled oysters - Grateful


Desserts

Cheese tart with strawberry glaze

No Galentine’s Day gathering is complete without a cheesecake. Your girls will go wild for this cheese tart with strawberry glaze. You’ll get all giddy with excitement because it delivers all the yum of a traditional cheesecake but can be made in less time and with less fuss. Line your favorite tart pan with a graham cracker crust, fill it with a lusciously sweet cream cheese filling, and slide it in the oven. When it’s showtime, decorate the chilled tart with fresh berries and a homemade strawberry glaze. The berries give this Galentine’s Day dessert a gorgeous pop of color and a bounty of bright flavor.

5D4B0625 - Holiday Cheese Tart with Strawberry Glaze

Strawberry pretzel dessert

Your gal pals will love every sweet, salty, creamy bite. This strawberry pretzel dessert features a crunchy pretzel crust that becomes a tasty foundation for a sweet cheesecake-like filling and strawberry-studded gelatin topping. Since Galentine’s Day gives you a chance to talk about food, and the good ol’ times, and food, you can tell them this retro-inspired dessert has roots dating back to the 1960s when it was called the strawberry pretzel salad. They’ll agree that “dessert” sounds far better than “salad,” especially when it comes to celebrating female friendships and women in general.


Cocktails

Chocolate espresso martini

You thrive on coffee dates and eating chocolates with your friends, so treat them with a boozy drink that features your favorite flavors. This chocolate espresso martini features a rim of chocolate that leads into an indulgent blend of espresso, Kahlua and vanilla-infused vodka. Your sistahs will lick their lips with sipping pleasure as the cocktail’s sweetness tickles their taste buds and the little boost of caffeine keeps their senses wide awake.

Dinner and a movie Willy Wonka chocolate martinis

Passion of love cocktail

Some people believe that good things come in threes and our Galentine’s Day cocktail proves that true. You make this lush drink with just three ingredients — cherry liqueur, Grand Marnier and cream. The cherry liqueur offsets the sweet-tart taste of oranges from the Grand Marnier, while the cream complements the fruity flavors. Best yet, you layer the three ingredients in a skinny glass, which shows off the contrasting colors of each ingredient and makes you look like a skilled cocktail queen. This pretty drink will have your gal pals feeling the love.

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