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Carol Fenster’s Step-by-Step Guide for a Romantic Gluten-Free Dinner for Two

Denver, CO (PRWEB) February 04, 2013

Carol Fenster, an expert on gluten-free cooking, believes that gluten intolerance shouldn’t dampen romantic, at-home dinners for two. She created this special dinner of Salmon and Vegetables in Parchment Packets, Tossed Salad, and Chocolate-Orange Mousse that is perfect for such occasions.

“Entertaining with a romantic, at-home dinner for two is easy—even if a guest is gluten intolerant—with simple dishes that are based on carefully-selected, flavorful ingredients,” says Carol Fenster, author of 10 gluten-free cookbooks including 1,000 Gluten-Free Recipes.

The romantic occasion could be Valentine’s Day or any other festive occasion with a celebratory mood such as a birthday dinner for that special someone, a wedding anniversary, or even the anniversary of a couple’s first date, says Fenster, who has served many romantic, gluten-free dinners since she was diagnosed with gluten-intolerance in 1988. Her simple, yet seductive recipes serve two, but are easily doubled or tripled. They are also dairy-free and egg-free—just in case a guest has those additional concerns. Here is her simple, step-by-step guide:

Start with Easy Appetizers
Fenster recommends starting with easy appetizers of olives and roasted nuts, gently heated in the microwave to heighten their flavors. A handful of chopped fresh herbs accents the flavors.

Serve a Simple, Make-Ahead Entrée
For each serving of Salmon and Vegetables in Parchment Packets, place a 12-inch square of parchment paper on the countertop. On each square, layer a 4-ounce salmon fillet (skin removed), 1/4 cup shredded carrots, a few 1/8-inch strips of red bell pepper, a couple of chopped olives, 1 tablespoon chopped parsley, and 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard. Add salt and pepper to taste, drizzle with a tablespoon of olive oil, wrap deli-sandwich style, twist the ends together to prevent leaks, and place on a baking sheet. Coat each packet lightly with cooking spray.

Bake in a preheated 425 degree oven for 12 to 15 minutes (or assemble the day before, chill overnight, and then bake 15 to 20 minutes). When done, place each beautifully-browned packet on a dinner plate and cut it open with scissors (careful, the steam is very hot). Serve immediately, accompanied by a tossed salad.

Finish With a Seductive, Personal-Size Chocolate Dessert
“Romantic dinners require seductive desserts,” says Fenster, “so chocolate with its erotic nuances is ideal…such as a smooth, creamy Chocolate-Orange Mousse.” She thinks small, individual desserts are much more personal and can be served easily, rather than larger desserts that must be cut and plated at the last minute—which can disrupt the romantic flow of the evening.

This easy mousse is quick to make, require no cooking, and can be prepared the day before. In a blender, puree one-half package (10 to 12-ounce size) of soft silken tofu (use remaining half for a smoothie the next morning), 3 tablespoons each unsweetened cocoa powder and agave nectar or honey, and a tablespoon of vanilla until very, very smooth. If appropriate, add a teaspoon of orange liqueur to each serving for a festive air—or one teaspoon grated zest from an orange or Clementine, or use both liqueur and zest for extra flavor. Divide between two small wine goblets, martini glasses, or elegant little coffee cups and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight. Serve, garnished with non-dairy whipped topping and more grated zest.

Create a Romantic Atmosphere
“Candles, flowers, wine, romantic music, and a caring attitude about a guest’s food sensitivity create a positive ambience and complete the setting for this memorable meal,” concludes Fenster.

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