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12 romantic dinner & a movie options for Valentine’s Day

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Sweet Home Alabama

MOVIE: Sweet Home Alabama (Don’t have it? Get it at Amazon or see more options)
RUNNING TIME: 1 hour, 48 minutes
STARRING: Reese Witherspoon, Josh Lucas, Patrick Dempsey

Toss on your best Jaclyn Smith top and settle in for a night of Southern wooing: food, fashion and a tale of the enduring (albeit a little messy at times) power of love. Whether you’re more like refined NYC designer Melanie Carmichael or the more, ahem, laid-back Melanie Smooter, you get misty-eyed either way by the movie’s end.

You don’t need the mayor of New York visiting for an excuse to whip up these extra-crispy fried pickles with Cajun dipping sauce.

Serve them alongside apple butter BBQ chicken sandwiches — which we like to call the “Melanie sandwich” — for a menu that matches the twangy tastes of the movie.

For dessert? A lemon plum skillet cake, because, firstly, nothing’s more Southern than a skillet and, secondly, Melanie’s mama says sometimes it’s the almost-ruined plums that turn out the sweetest.

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