I can't say I've ever put much stock in Valentine's Day, as far as holidays go. I don't expect a dozen roses, I'd rather go out for a nice dinner on a leisurely weeknight, and I certainly don't want jewelry. But it's nice, I admit, to have an excuse to spend the day with my husband with no purpose in mind other than simply spending the day together.
And what could be better than starting the day with brunch at home? After a trip down the street to Fred Meyer to purchase eggs and whipped cream (in the can - Michael makes no bones about the fact that he prefers his light and fluffy and aerosol pumped), I set about making chocolate chip pancakes to the bossa nova beat of Getz and Gilberto. The secret to truly delicious pancakes? Yogurt, baking soda, and club soda. You can find the recipe, for "blueberry pancakes", online at Saveur's website, www.saveur.com. I simply substituted chocolate chips for the berries, seeing as this is mid-winter. Malio sparkling peach juice was the perfect accompaniment.
In the afternoon we headed out to Green Lake to walk the pooch, who, despite her inherent fear of the car (she spends most of her time on the backseat with haunches taut, staring despondently down at her blanket), is not completely oblivious, and as soon as we had parked her ears perked up with recognition. Lucy loves Green Lake, although she'd love it even more if we actually let her dive into the water after the ducks.
And since we were practically in the neighborhood, why not stop at Molly Moon's? Nothing says love like salted caramel and chili chocolate ice cream topped with hot fudge when it's 45 degrees outside. Michael would appear to agree.
Our last stop before heading home was Bottleworks, where we were thrilled to find our favorite Belgian tripel, Karmeliet, on hand, after Whole Foods Beer Guy informed us a few weeks ago that there is at present no distribution for this beer in the U.S. Luckily Bottleworks still has some on hand - hie ye hence! And what better to accompany a good beer than a great pizza? Back at home that night, we pulled out the hidabed and shared a Pagliacci pizza, ingeniously navigating to keep Lucy away from our prized slices of cheesy goodness, then settled in for a movie with the dog passed out possessively across our laps. I couldn't have asked for a better Valentine.