A good oil, alcohol and advice on tipping
One good oil
Stöger oils from Austria are pure oils and not to be used for cooking but the oils are ideal for drizzling on everything from ice cream to vegetables, soups and salads (try it on roasted kale chips). The Stögers produce cold-pressed oils, both from their own seed and other unique seeds and nuts across Europe that come in four varieties; organic Austrian pumpkin seed oil, cherry seed oil, tomato seed oil, and chile seed oil. Get the gift pack (hazelnut, chile and pumpkin seed oils) for your valentine for $39 or purchase individually in a 3.38-ounce bottle for $15 and use them to create a gourmet finish on a romantic meal. Available at stogeroil.com and also at the Cost Plus World Market in the Bed, Bath & Beyond in Farmington Hills.
One good cocktail
Sweeten your sweetheart with this Rasmopolitan cocktail courtesy of Martha Stewart. Rasmopolitan: Combine 1 ounce citrus-flavored vodka, 1 ounce raspberry-flavored vodka, 1/2 ounce Chambord, 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice, 1 tablespoon simple syrup and 2 tablespoons cranberry juice in a cocktail shaker filled halfway with ice. Shake well and strain into chilled martini glass. Garnish with raspberries. Makes 1 cocktail.
One good tip
This tip from chef Marcus Samuelsson might be good to remember when trying to impress your sweetheart with a romantic dinner. If you’re cooking for someone important — whether it’s your boss or a date — never try a new recipe and a new ingredient at the same time.
Compiled by Kate Lawson