Hello everyone! I apologize for my small hiatus, but I have returned, though not in time for the Super Bowl. Regardless of which team you were rooting for – or if you were just watching for the commercials – I hope that all of the players are recovering with a nice glass of chocolate milk to repair their muscles and replenish their electrolytes.

I am in time for another special day of the year: Valentine’s Day. If you are planning on gifting that special someone with the go-to gift of chocolate, I recommend that you choose to give them milk chocolate to show you love for them as well as the hardworking dairy farmers. Also, though I have no personal experience on this matter, I have heard that wine and cheese pair very well together.

Another idea, if you are not looking for a food-related gift, would be to gift them an adorable cow stuffed animal, or even a real cow for those of you who are feeling extra ambitious.

Whatever you choose to do for Valentine’s Day, I hope that it is a special day for everyone.

On another note, February is a great month because many people have taken to calling it Februdairy. Dairy products contain many health benefits such as its nine essential nutrients, including calcium and potassium. Milk fat, which may sound bad, is actually really good for brain development and is one of the healthier forms of fat. Milk also offers plenty of water for hydration, and so much more.

Not only is the product that is produced great, but the people who help to produce these delicious foods are pretty great too. Dairy farmers, and all farmers, work hard to take care of both their animals and the land, all while producing a product that is nutritious and delicious.

This month can be especially hard for the farmers as they brave the cold and the snow to ensure that the animals are fed and cared for. So, as you sit around the table this month, be sure to give a quick thanks to all of the hardworking men and women who have worked hard to make sure that there is food to be put onto you table.

I hope that everyone is doing well and that you all have a wonderful Valentine’s Day. Stay warm, stay healthy and may you all have a dairy good February.

For my recipe, this month I have chosen a warm and cheesy dish that is one of my favorite dinners.

Chicken Divan

Ingredients

2 chicken breasts (boil for 20 minutes)

About 2 heads of broccoli (boil for 20 minutes)

¾ cup shredded cheese

Mixture

1 can cream of chicken soup

1 can cream of broccoli soup

½ cup of mayonnaise

½ teaspoon lemon juice

½ teaspoon curry powder

Directions

Layer broccoli, chicken, mixture, and cheese in a glass pan.

Top with bread (cube 4 slices of bread and toss with 2 tablespoons of melted butter).

Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Goes well served over rice.

Danielle Herrick is the Wyoming County Dairy Princess. Her column appears twice a month in The Daily News.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1