Tag Archives: valentine’s day

No Reservation? No problem.

Food Columnist Devin Hardy offers up a tasty Valentine’s Day dinner for two.

It’s Valentine’s Day next Thursday, and you haven’t made a reservation! Don’t panic, keep it old school and prepare that special someone a fun, tasty meal. This meal is all about comfort. Time to get started on this taste adventure!

Let’s start off with something a little cheesy, an artichoke melt. This will dissolve any lingering tensions and melt away those reservations you have about tackling this challenge of cooking  from scratch.

Appetizer: Artichoke Melt 

Sourdough or white break, thickly sliced

Artichoke hearts

Mayo (substitute Greek yogurt or sour cream)


Salt/pepper/(to taste)

Combine mayo and hearts in a bowl, and spread the mixture over the bread. Top with a layer of mozzarella, bake for 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted. Option: for presentation points, serve it over a sprinkle of parsley flakes.

Now, it’s time to get into the meat of this story, quite literally. We’ll dive into the main course—a bourbon (or substitute*) marinated steak that has a smokey flavor to it, but is also slightly sweet.

Main Course: Marinated Steak 

Caramelize the onions, and then add the chili and garlic. Then after letting them sauté, add coke. Then place your meat in it and let it sit for 5 hours. Take those out and sear in a pan. You can also boil the rest of the marinade for a reduction/the onions absorb the liquid making it a bit more flavorful. When the center of the steak gets to about 160 degrees in the middle, take them out and then you can finish it in the oven.

 *(Option: You can substitute the entire marinade above for coke, seven-up, soy sauce, and sesame oil. This goes better with thin slices of steak like brisket or flank. It is a lighter, more citrus flavor. It won’t overwhelm you either since it’s much simpler).

Dessert: Chocolate Caramel Corn

1/2 cup butter

1/4 cup light corn syrup

1 cup brown sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

12 cups popcorn


Melt butter over medium heat. Add in sugar and corn syrup, whisking until mixture begins to bubble. Turn off heat and whisk in vanilla, salt and baking soda. Fold in popcorn. This is the point in time when I melt the chocolates and drizzle over Carmel corn.

Well, adventurer, you’ve reached the end of this story. Bottom line: Food on Valentine’s Day is about comfort. Because when you have comfort food, you feel as ease with that special someone.


This V-Day Put Down the Ice Cream and Get Swimmin’

For all the swimmers and water lovers out there, Valentine’s Day is sure to bring you a sweet surprise. In addition to flowers and chocolate, avid gym goers will also be able to enjoy the Koret pool which will be ready to open its doors again in a few short weeks.

The pool is on schedule to open on Feb. 14, said Clare Rudd, aquatics instructor at the Koret Health and Recreation Center. After months of construction, the secret to keeping this anticipated re-opening on track was the constant work schedule of the contractors.

While many USF students enjoyed a nice, long six-week winter break, Rudd said that the Koret pool workers only took off Christmas and New Year’s Day and worked consistently through the break. The pool area has been painted and re-tiled, scaffolds are gone, and the old ceiling lights have been replaced, according to Rudd.

Naturally, people have been curious about the progress of construction. Rudd said that some onlookers often asked questions about the status of the project, while others have been completely oblivious to the large-scale construction project. “We have had people walk all the way down not noticing the construction or the signs,” she said.

No major issues were presented during the process and everything is on schedule.

Awkward Silence Kills It at the “My Akward, Bloody Valentine” Show

After two wildly successful performances at the Golden Gate Regional College Improv Tournament a few weeks ago, USF’s improv team, Awkward Silence, is riding high on their success. To celebrate, and to raise funds to head to nationals in Chicago next month, Awkward Silence put on a Valentines themed show in Cowell Hall. The admission was $5, but no one could argue that it wasn’t for an extremely good cause.
Joined by UC Davis’ improv team Birdcage Theater, it was a night of local Northern California comedy.
Birdcage Theater took the stage first. For the students at USF who frequent our school’s improv shows, it was rather refreshing to see some new faces spice up the evening. Considering the fact that USF does not have the built in camaraderie with others schools quite like the UC system does, Davis added a friendly dose of intercollegiate fun.
When Awkward Silence took the stage for the remainder of the night, it was easy to see why our team will be representing the Bay Area in the Improv Nationals. Team Captains Eddie Harrison and Matt Cline facilitated the nights festivities per usual. In addition to the two captains, all of the Awkward Silence personalities we’ve come to know and love were present.
The two hour evening consisted in performances of all the improv games that make our team as talented as they are. What’s more exciting than the show itself was the fact that their next big performance is going to be in the birthplace of improv comedy, Chicago.
When considering the greatest comedians of the last century, it is hard to find one that didn’t pay his or her dues in Chicago.
Captain Eddie Harrison, a native of Chicago, has served his time as an intern at the legendary Second City Improv Troupe. John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Gilda Radner, Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, and Jane Lynch are just a few notable alumni of the theatre.
In fact, 30 Rock viewers will often find themselves watching Liz Lemon’s flashbacks to her days in the Chicago comedy scene.
With all the talent of the team and the obvious support from their friends here in San Francisco, it seems that the team is poised to do the City proud when they make their way to the Midwest in a few weeks.
“I’ve been on the team for four years, and they get better with each. I’m very glad they got the recognition they deserve.,” said Harrison.
For those who made the rainy evening trip to Cowell Hall last Friday, feel good knowing that your support will help Awkward Silence give one hell of a performance in Nationals.

USF Sweethearts

Valentine’s Day is coming up and l’amour est dans l’air. Scene Editor Rieko Whitfield spent some time taking photos and interviewing a few of USF’s most adorable couples. Whether you’re single or taken, these love stories of high school crushes and overseas romance are sure to warm your heart.

Junior Laura Waldron and sophomore Emily Turner have been together for 4 months. They met at USF last year. They enjoy going out on dates to vegan restaurants and different bars around the city.
USF Sweethearts
USF Sweethearts

What was your very first impression of Emily?
My first impression of Emily was that she was super shy and super sexy.
What are your favorite characteristics about Emily?
She is so so smart and incredibly thoughtful. Once you get to know her, she is the silliest person.
One word to describe Emily:

What is the most important lesson you have you learned from this relationship?
That gender is the least important and most irrelevant thing ever in a relationship.
What characteristics do you love most about Laura?
She’s so intelligent. And caring and passionate and adorable and hilarious.
One word to desribe Laura:

Sophomores Isabella Minoli and Anthony Risucci have been together for 3 years. They attended middle school together and eventually became friends. Anthony and Isabella started dating their junior year of high school.
USF Sweethearts
USF Sweet Hearts

What was your first impression of Anthony?
I know Ant says it was love at first sight for him but on my end? Yeah, not so much… He just wasn’t my type at the time… Not once did he ever stop liking me though and eventually he won me over.
Anthony is definitely “the nice guy”… It’s cheesy, but I love it.
One word to describe Anthony:

What have you learned in the past 3 years from this relationship?
I have found that “love” isn’t about being “meant for each other”, or “finding the one”, or any of that stuff Hollywood pushes. If you care about someone and want to make it work with them then you do everything for that person.
One word to describe Isabella:

Junior Rainier Cardin and Senior Nicola McLaughlin have been together for 4 years. They got together in high school when they both attended Sacred Heart Cathedral Prepatory. They currently live together in San Francisco.
USF Sweethearts
USF Sweethearts

What is your favorite quality about Nicola?
She is one of the few people who can put a smile on my face. I couldn’t ask for anyone to be more supportive about everything I do… Nicola came to every single one of my football games. Not everyone will drive more than three hours to come to all my games.
One word to describe Nicola:

What is your favorite quality about Rainier?
My favorite quality about him is probably his ability to be so mature and carry intelligent conversations with anyone he meets. I also admire his leadership abilities.
Where did you meet Rainier?
At high school prep rally the summer before my senior year .
One word to describe Rainier?

How to Love Being Single in 7 Simple Steps

Do you have the Why-am-I-always-single-on-Valentine’s-Day blues? Don’t bust out the Patsy Cline and the Ben n’ Jerry’s just yet. Being single is not a curse – it’s a testament to our freedom. Singledom is exhilarating and empowering. Read on for words (and illustration) of wisdom from a romantically liberated individual, Scene Editor Rieko Whitfield.

Screen shot 2012-03-26 at 2.17.03 PM

1) Don’t victimize yourself. You. Yes, you. Get the hell off your ex’s Facebook page and go have some fun. Just because you’re single now doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with who you are. Stop whining to your friends, family, and every willing stranger on the MUNI about how you’re never going to find someone. If you can’t learn to stand strong on your own two feet, you’re not emotionally ready to commit to a healthy relationship (refer to Exhibit A).

2) Remember, you live in San Francisco. You’re in the heart of one of the most culturally diverse and exciting cities on the west coast. Go out dancing in the Castro. Make out with a stranger at a bar in the Mission. Flirt with the cute barista at your favorite coffee shop on Divisadero. From the city that birthed the free love movement in the 1960’s, being single in San Francisco is groovy.

3) Keep your doors open. If you’re really looking for a relationship, branch out and meet new people. Don’t be quick to label USF as “University of Sexual Frustration” (or better known as “University of Single Females” by all the ladies). There are plenty of attractive people at USF. I shamelessly check out cuties all over campus that I admit I’m too shy to chat up. I assume a lot of us are in the same boat. Get involved in clubs and meet people that share your interests. If you’re eyeing someone, work up the courage just to talk to him or her. Enjoy the fact that you are free to pursue anyone you want. There’s nothing like the rush you get from the thrill of the chase. Even if USF girls/guys aren’t up to your elitist standards, there are single people at SFSU, SFAI, and all over San Francisco in general.

4) Face it. For most of us, we’re never going to be younger, thinner, or hotter than we are now. Make the most of it. Do you really want to waste your glory years tied down in a relationship? You can save all the domestic couple-y crap until you’re 15 years older, 15 lbs. fatter, and when you’ve sprouted your first gray hairs and wrinkles.

5) Be selfish. You are free. This is the period in your life when your sole purpose is to figure out who you really are. Take up a crazy new hobby. Do something reckless. Get a tattoo. Dye your hair blue. Apply for your dream internship. Take time for yourself. You can do whatever your heart desires, and no significant other can stop you.

6) Be patient. When you’re so wrapped up in the present, it’s easy to forget that you have your whole life ahead of you. We all know that mending a broken heart takes time, but don’t give up yet! You never know when that special someone will walk into your life and blow you away.

7) Don’t confuse love with a Valentine’s Day card from Hallmark. Love is your mother’s home-cooked meals. Love is the late night heart-to-heart conversations with your best friends. Love is cuddling on the couch with your dog. Whether you’re single or taken, love can take many different forms in your life. Don’t ever take it for granted.

Karina’s Recipes for the Perfect Anti-Valentine’s Day Date

My least favorite time of the year is around the corner and, being single once again, I am in need of something to do that doesn’t involve chocolate hearts and pink stuffed animals. While I commend those of you who have dates this year, for those of you who don’t here are few ideas on how you can make sure you don’t end up sitting in a dark room eating ice cream by yourself.

Have a “Screw You Valentine’s Day” bake off: Get a bunch of friends together and hold a baking challenge. Nothing screams “screw you” more than a little competition. Have each friend bring a baked good and sample each of the different desserts to determine the winner. You can even have different categories such as vegan, non-vegan and gluten free. By the end of the night, everyone will be so high off of sugar that they will forget what holiday it even is.

Get a bunch of friends together for a dinner party: Make sure that you have nothing remotely close to a themed dinner. Stray away from anything red or heart-shaped. Get a bunch of single friends and make a random dish that you’ve always wanted to try. For this, think ethnic. And since you’re single, you can eat all the garlic and onions you want. Or have everyone make something and have a plethora of food that will send everyone into a happy food coma.

Try a new restaurant that has been at the top of your list: While everyone else is going out to dinner with their dates, make a date with a group of friends to try that one restaurant that has been on the top of your restaurant “to do” list since the beginning of freshman year. At dinner try the weirdest thing on the menu, and feel free to make fun of those who are on actual dates.

If all else fails, succumb to an evening of chocolate and cheesy movie watching: Sometimes you are inevitably sucked into the complete lameness of Valentine’s Day, and may want to join in the festivities. If these feelings should occur, gather friends and make these easy chocolate truffles:

- 8oz high quality dark chocolate
- ½ cup of heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
- cocoa powder, coconut flakes, and chopped peanuts (for coating)

- Bring the heavy cream to a boil in a heavy saucepan
- Chop chocolate and place in a glass bowl
- Add the cream and vanilla and stir until the chocolate melts, let sit for 2 hours until room temperature and the consistency of frosting
- Roll into small truffles and then into choice of coatings
- Enjoy with a Ryan Gosling movie, preferably The Notebook or Crazy, Stupid, Love. That’ll get you in the Valentine’s Day spirit!

So folks, this year if you’re single on February 14th, take the day as an opportunity not to wallow but to get together with friends. Of course anything that deals with food is music to my ears; so don’t hesitate to try something new and fantastic this Tuesday!