My wife and I, having been together over 30 years, aren’t overly sentimental about VD these days, but we aren’t so far along that we ignore it. We kiss, we relax, and I cook.

What I realized today about my cooking and my ‘style’ is that–well, there are simply too many flavors abundant in this world to only sample a few every day, and when opportunity strikes, I will go to town and prep as many small dishes (tapas) as possible. Tonight was no exception, and I pulled together enough varied flavors and textures to keep our mouths interested and surprised for the course of the dinner.

Shrimp Cocktail with Avocado Wedge and Lemon
Catsup, Tabasco, a dash of mustard, and lemon juice. Mix, refrigerate, and guild with one larger shrimp on top and a garnish of lemon skin strips
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Mushroom Adobo
Soy sauce, vinegar, black pepper, and a dash of Tabasco cooked down to a gentle glaze and garnished with scallions


Cheese Plate
Not a lot of cheese, but including Taleggio, a soft, blooming cheese, Pt Reyes Toma, a semi-firm cheese from the north county, and Tremor Truffle, a stridently assertive mold that can hit you like an unsuspecting blue (or so my wife reported…without histrionics).


Maguro With Soy Sauce and Ginger
Get high grade sashimi quality tuna, marinate in soy sauce and rice vinegar, then garnish with sesame seeds and grated ginger to open your mouth up!


Add some sweet, roasted vegetables like peppers, shallots, tomato, and garlic, cut some nice crusty bread, and a reasonably priced wine (white or red or sparkling) and hope that the food your wife…well, never mind.