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It seems like it used to be a lot easier to go out to eat on Valentine’s Day. But these days, it feels nearly impossible to get a reservation, and even if you do, you’re looking at a crowded dining room, slow service, and an overpriced prix-fixe meal that ends up being pretty underwhelming. That’s why we love having date night at home. It’s a quieter, more intimate experience, and even better, you can make yourself a luxurious meal for pennies on the dollar. Even better? This pasta recipe from Giada De Laurentiis comes together in less than a half hour, so you have more time to actually enjoy your meal with your loved one, rather than waiting in the cold doorway of a restaurant for your reservation because they’re running behind schedule thanks to the Valentine’s Day crowd.
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The star of Giada De Laurentiis‘ Sicilian crab and cherry tomato fettucini is, of course, the crab. She calls for jumbo lump crab meat, which you can usually find at the seafood counter of a well-stocked grocery store. Don’t be tempted to use canned crab meat, as the texture and flavor simply won’t be the same, and this is a special date night meal, after all.
Courtesy of Clarkson Potter.
The pasta itself is first tossed in a sauce made from canned cherry tomatoes, white wine, and aromatics. You can use dry pasta, but we think fresh pasta, whether homemade or bought at the store, would be especially nice here.
The sweet, succulent crab meat is added to the pasta just before it’s done cooking, along with butter and Parmesan cheese. The resulting dish is creamy, rich, full of that sweet seafood flavor from the crab, and totally satisfying.
Courtesy of Tuscanini.
To make the meal a complete success, De Laurentiis recommends pairing it with a Garibaldi. This simple cocktail is made with nothing but Campari and orange juice — use freshly squeezed for a special treat. Pair with your favorite dessert, be it this new Reese’s treat at Costco, or maybe Martha Stewart’s 5-ingredient chocolate truffles, and you’ll have a date night to remember.
Before you go, check out the gallery below:
Watch: How to Make Gorgeous Chocolate-Covered Strawberries That Have a Sweet Surprise Inside
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