The main thing to remember today is NOT to go out to dinner. Make dinner at home, and avoid the massive crowds.
We don't do Valentine's Day, but were we to do it, here's what I would make.
- Fantasy awesome salad of baby spinach or arugula or that spring mix with the baby beet leaves in it, plus good vinaigrette and cracked pepper. Extra sap points for edible flowers, such as pansies. Note that my "fantasy awesome salad" is really just leaves. If you want something more elaborate, something in the beet and goat cheese area would also work.
- The season's first, thinnest, best asparagus, if you can find it. If you can't find it, either up the salad size or make a batch of garlicky braised greens. Probably many people would do a classic asparagus hollandaise here, but I'd just barely steam mine and put a pat of butter and maybe a tiny bit of minced parsley on top. You can't cloak new season asparagus in gross hollandaise!
- Pasta in cream sauce. Absolutely. (This is the other reason not to do hollandaise: cream sauce is all the rich you need.) If you wanted meat, you could sear off a couple very tiny veal scallops with lemon and rest them on top of the pasta, but I don't think it's necessary at all. Lots of different cream sauce varieties would work here: classic alfredo would be best with meat, but a blended tomato or roasted red pepper cream sauce would probably be my first choice. You could even make a regular marinara sauce and melt some goat cheese or cream cheese in at the very end. I'd probably use a long thin pasta like linguine or cappellini, though penne or some sort of exciting corkscrew shape would work as well. Don't use macaroni or plain spaghetti; it's a holiday, you guys. Macaroni is for tuna casserole on Tuesday night.
- For dessert, I'd probably keep things very simple: a couple good chocolate bars broken in pieces plus some clementines or other good citrus is all you really need. Of course, you could do chocolate mousse if you felt like it.
- Drinks: I'm not going to pretend I'm very good at matching wines with food. That said: on Valentine's Day, champagne always works. I'd probably also have some good (decaf) espresso around for the chocolate-eating part of the evening.