Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day Recipes You'll Fall in Love With

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Celebrity chef Fabio Viviani, of Chicago’s Toscana, shared the perfect Valentine’s Day recipes for you to share with a loved one... or heck, make them all for yourself!

There are no rules! Enjoy.

Roasted Lemon Chicken Piccata

Herb Marinated Free-Range Chicken Breast, Lemon White Wine Caper Piccata Sauce, Sauteed Garlic Spinach and Herb Roasted Fingerling Potatoes. (Gluten-free).


12 oz chicken breast, pounded

AP Flour to coat

2 tablespoons oil

1/2 cup chicken stock

1/2 cup white wine

1/4 cup capers

1 tablespoon crushed garlic

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon sliced chive

1 lemon, juiced

Salt and pepper


Coat pounded chicken breasts with flour, heat 2 tbsp oil in sautée pan.  
Cook chicken in oil on both sides until light brown. Remove chicken from pan, Add capers and garlic, sauté until the garlic is golden brown.  Deglaze with wine. Add lemon juice and chicken stock.

Reduce sauce for about 2 minutes and reintroduce chicken to pan, toss to coat. Add the butter and finish with chives. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Grandma Viviani's Meatballs

Old World Beef & Ricotta Cheese Meatballs (5), Roasted Tomato Sugo. Topped with Fried Basil and Grana Padano Cheese. Fabio’s generational family recipe. 


1 lb. ground beef

4 oz. whole milk ricotta cheese

1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated

1 cup panko breadcrumbs

1 egg

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 shallots, minced

1 tbsp. olive oil

Salt and pepper

2 cups Fabio's Tomato Sauce (recipe below)

Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish

Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling


Heat the tomato sauce in a saucepan over medium heat, then drop the meatballs into the sauce and add enough water to allow the sauce to reduce and simmer but not so much that the sauce is totally liquid. Cook for about 10 minutes on one side, then turn the meatballs over, add some more water, and cook for another 10 minutes, using a spoon to cover the meatballs with the sauce as they simmer. Remove from heat and let rest for 5 minutes.

Serve with chopped parsley, salt and pepper, more Parmigiano-Reggiano, and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, of course!

TIP: Don’t waste expensive cuts of meat on meatballs! If prepared correctly, a cheaper cut of meat like beef shoulder/chuck, or even scraps will work perfectly.


2 smashed garlic cloves

1/4 cup olive oil

1 teaspoon cracked black pepper

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar

1 can 16 oz. tomatoes

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

6 basil leaves, not pressed down

Tomato Sauce


1. Add ¼ cup oil, pepper and salt and smashed garlic in a large pot.
2. Cook garlic until golden brown, then add in plum tomatoes and smash with potato smasher.
3. Cook on high until sauce begins to boil then reduce to medium flame, stirring every few minutes. Cook time is about 15 /20 minutes.
4. Remove from heat and add in sugar and basil leaves, check seasoning.

Aged Parmesan Creamed Spinach

Spinach Sautéed in EVOO and Fresh Garlic, Finished in Grana Padano Cream Sauce.


20 oz. baby spinach

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup milk

1/4 cup heavy cream

4 oz. mascarpone cheese

1/4 cup Grana Padano cheese, grated


In a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add onion and cook until soft, 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook about 1 minute more.

Add milk, heavy cream, and mascarpone cheese to skillet. Simmer until the cheese is melted. Season with salt, pepper, and a pinch of cayenne.

Add spinach and Parmesan and stir until well coated. Season to taste.

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