cover image Date Night In: More than 120 Recipes to Nourish Your Relationship

Date Night In: More than 120 Recipes to Nourish Your Relationship

Ashley Rodriguez. Running Press, $27.50 (288p) ISBN 978-0-7624-5246-0

The romantic dinner is nothing new, but this decidedly modern cookbook designed for the busy couple brings novel flavors and savvy strategy to the table. Food lovers with young children will be especially familiar with Rodriguez’s dilemma—how to revive date night on a limited budget with even more limited childcare—but her solution will work for any couple that’s eager to express their love through cookery. An extension of a dinner series developed on the author’s blog (, the collection of date menus is organized seasonally, with a detailed step-by-step time line for breaking down the steps, plus a list of all of the groceries needed. The food is both comforting and creative, from the dude-centric “His Birthday” meal of wedge salad, honey and Sriracha chicken wings, and rainbow chip cake, to a fall feast of crudités with creamy olive tapenade, roasted red onions with golden raisin gremolata, chanterelle pot pie, and poached pears in muscat. Rodriguez’s vivid descriptions and candid revelations make for an engrossing read. With clever cocktails (Gordon’s Cup with caraway, sweet plum sangria) and unexpected snatches of poetry in the mix, all that’s left is the candlelight and meaningful glances. Color photos. [em](Jan.) [/em]