Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching which means that love is in the air, chocolates are filling stores’ shelves, flowers are being sold by the dozen and…groundhogs are preparing to see their shadows? Although not necessarily true anymore, Groundhog Day used to be celebrated on February 14! Here are some more unconventional Valentine’s Day fun facts with corresponding recipes that are sure to get you ready for this season of love.
Love Isn’t Cheap
One thing that most people can agree on is that relationships can be expensive- between birthdays and Christmas you might find yourself spending quite a bit of money to ensure that your significant other has a great day. Not surprisingly, Valentine’s Day is no exception- the average consumer spends $166.21 for February 14. This year, spend a little less by shopping at Sparkle for ingredients that will make the perfect dinner for two. Check out this recipe for a steak and potato dinner that will impress your significant other without breaking the bank.
For more affordable dinner ideas, look at this gallery of romantic recipes.
Celebrations Around the World
In the United States, Valentine’s Day might mean buying candy hearts and roses, but other countries celebrate this day in very different ways. When the holiday was first introduced in Japan in 1936, there was a translation error made by a chocolate company that led to only women buying gifts for their significant others. Men in Japan don’t return the favor until “White Day” which is celebrated in March. In the Philippines, mass weddings have become incredibly popular, where hundreds of couples gather on February 14 and get married all at the same time. In Wales, natives don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day in February, but rather in January with the traditional gift being “love spoons” engraved with meaningful patterns and symbols. This year, use some of these unique traditions as inspiration and make an ethnic meal for two! Check out our recipe for coconut fish tacos here.
Valentine’s Day isn’t Just for Couples
While Valentine’s Day might be filled with love and couples, it can also be SAD for some people. SAD, or Singles Awareness Day, is a holiday that is widely celebrated by singles on either February 14 or February 15. For this celebration, single friends get together to either embrace their situation or curse Cupid. But single women need not worry- there are 119 single men in their 20s for every 100 single women of the same age. Whether or not love is in the air, the odds will be in women’s favor this February. If you plan on throwing a SAD celebration this year, consider this recipe for creamy bacon mac and cheese that will satisfy your guests’ stomachs (and hearts).
Season of Gift Giving
Although candy is the number one gift given on Valentine’s Day, cards and flowers are very close behind. In fact, about 180 million cards are exchanged annually on February 14 and while men are the primary buyers of flowers, 15% of American women buy themselves flowers on Valentine’s Day. This year, take a break from the usual cards, flowers and chocolates, and instead spoil your sweetheart (or yourself) with a dessert that is sure to make this Valentine’s Day stand out from all of the others. Try our recipe for chocolate truffle stuffed strawberries and red velvet cheesecake brownies.