Affordable, at-home Valentine's Day dinner ideas

Need an affordable, at-home Valentine’s Day Dinner? In this week's Dining with Duria, Angelica prepare Fresh Tomato Burrata Cheese Pesto Dip, oven-cooked London Broil and Brown Sugar Baked Pears.

Fresh Tomato Burrata Cheese Pesto Dip


-          1 cup of chopped grape tomatoes

-          1-2 burrata cheese balls

-          3-4 tbsps of pesto

-          A few drizzles of extra virgin olive oil & balsamic vinegar

-          ¼ cup of fresh basil, sliced thin

-          Fresh ground pepper

-          Bag of crostinis


Place room temperature burrata ball/s in a serving dish or bowl.  Put dollops of pesto all over.

In a pan, sauté tomatoes with olive oil & balsamic vinegar.  Then pour on top of burrata dish.

Grind some fresh pepper on top and top with fresh basil.

Serve with crostini.

Oven-cooked London Broil (flank steak)

Ingredients for marinade:

-          1/3 cup soy sauce

-          ½ cup olive oil

-          1/3 cup lemon juice

-          ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce

-          1 ½ Tbsp garlic powder

-          3 tbsp dried basil

-          1 ½ Tbsp dried parsley flakes

-          1 tsp ground pepper

-          1/8 tsp cayenne pepper or 1 Tbsp of red pepper flakes

-          1 tsp minced garlic


Combine all ingredients.  Pour marinade over 1-2 lbs of flank steak or London broil meat.  Cover and refrigerate for up to 8 hours.

To broil, preheat broiler with oven rack about 4 in. from source of heat. Or if desired, preheat grill pan or skillet over high heat. Remove meat from marinade, reserve marinade. Place meat on broiler pan or in grill pan. Cook 3-4 mins on each side for a 1 lb. cut of meat in you want medium rare.  4-6 mins on each side for a 2 lb. cut of meat.  Transfer London broil to cutting board. Let stand 10 min.

Meanwhile, in small saucepan, heat reserved marinade and water to boiling over medium heat.  Boil 1 min. To serve, thinly slice steak across the grain; transfer to platter and drizzle with sauce.

Serve with grilled or sautéed vegetables.

Brown Sugar Baked Pears


-          2 firm Bosc pears, cut in half peeled and cored

-          2/3 cup light brown sugar

-          2/3 cup apple cider (or water or sprite)

-          4 Tbsp butter

-          Whip cream

-          Sliced almonds


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine brown sugar and liquid in a small saucepan and bring to a slight boil, making sure sugar is dissolved. Stir in butter.

Place pears in a shallow baking dish cut side up. Pour sauce over pears.

Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes, basting pears frequently. Check to make sure they are fork tender. Remove the pears and keep warm. Pour the sauce back into the saucepan and reduce over medium heat until it is thick and syrupy..

Drizzle sauce over pears and serve with whip cream. Garnish with sliced almonds.  Serve immediately.