‘Barefoot Contessa’: Ina Garten Shares The Dessert That Stole Her Husband’s Heart

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, here’s the dessert that won Ina Garten her sweetheart, Jeffrey!

Ina and Jeffrey Garten
Ina and Jeffrey Garten | Jim Spellman/WireImage

Anyone who knows anything about Barefoot Contessa star Ina Garten knows the love of her life is her husband, Jeffrey. The couple have a beautiful love story that cannot be told without mentioning many of Garten’s hit recipes. In fact, she published a “love letter” cookbook of sorts for her husband called, Cooking For Jeffrey in 2016.

There’s one particular dessert, however, that won her Jeffrey over. 

Find out more about this sweet dish and the pair’s love story.

How this amazing couple stays in love

The Gartens will be married 52 years this year but truly look still so smitten with one another. They are one of the most admired couples, and Ina’s Instagram posts of the two only encourage fans to swoon over their sweet love story. So what’s their secret?  

Ina pondered that question in a conversation with Huffington Post in 2018, saying “I remember [talk show host] Larry King once had an interview with Tony Robbins, and Larry, who I think has been married like 20 times, asked Tony, ‘What’s the one key to a happy marriage?’ “

“And I thought, ‘That’s a crazy question ― it’s not just one thing!’ And Tony Robbins said, ‘Each person needs to feel that they’re the most important thing in the other person’s life.’ And I thought, ‘Whoaaaaaaa! That’s exactly right! That’s the one thing!’ And I always feel that way about Jeffery and I know he feels that way about me.”

Jeffrey Garten’s favorite dinner

It’s adorable that Ina Garten considers cooking for her husband to be one of her treasured things to do. He seems to be (rightly so!) extremely appreciative of his wife’s incredible talent. Her favorite dinner to make for him? Crispy mustard chicken and frisée.

The recipe calls for panko bread flakes, lemon zest, Dijon mustard, bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, fingerling potatoes, and salad greens. It’s a delicious, one-pot meal.

As Ina says about the recipe in her cookbook, Cook Like A Pro, “This is a great summer dinner! I love the interplay of hot and cold – the crispy chicken and roasted fingerling potatoes with the slightly bitter greens and mustard vinaigrette. This hits all the right notes for me.”

The sweet stuff that said ‘I love you’ to Jeffrey

Jeffrey’s favorite dessert that Ina makes with lots of love are basic, chocolatey brownies. But you know Ina doesn’t make out-of-the-box brownies. These are turbo brownies.

In a talk she gave at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in 2016, Garten revealed that she met Jeffrey when she was in high school while he was a student at Dartmouth University. She did what any other intelligent girl would do. She started delivering to his dorm boxes of brownies.

“When those brownies came, I was the most popular guy in class,” Jeffrey said. “I thought, this is the cutest guy I’ve ever seen in my life,” Ina said. “And he still is.”

Read more: ‘Barefoot Contessa’: The 1 Surprising Thing That Ina Garten Refuses To Do