Make Valentine’s Day a Feat of Love

The aphrodisiac qualities of food have been a part of romanticfolklore since Eve handed Adam that apple in the Garden of Eden. Today, there’s no easier way to add a touch of je ne sais quoi to Valentine’s Day than by cooking up a feast in the kitchen.

Why not start off the day with Nigella Lawson’s Raspberry Swirls? To make these all you’ll need is a cup of frozen raspberries, two teaspoons of icing sugar, Greek yoghurt and two oatmeal cookies.

Firstly put the raspberries in a blender, blend them slightly, add the sugar and blend again until the mix forms a gooey pasteCrush the biscuits with a rolling pin. Spoon the mix into a glass, add a layer of yoghurt, a layer of biscuits and repeat, so you have six layers of red, white and biscuit crumbs. These take five minutes to prepare, lookirresistible and are the perfect brekkie to kick off a day of love.

But let’s be honest, the most delectable part of V-day is the evening. It’s when the sun starts to fade that our taste buds crave a tender and luscious treat, and what could be more tempting than Sticky fig lamb cutlets with warm bean & couscous salad.

For this recipe, you’ll need 100 grams (g) of couscous; six lamb cutlets; two tablespoons of olive oil; 200g of green beans (cooked); four tablespoons of fig jam mixed with two tablespoons of water; two tablespoons of balsamic vinegar; half a small red onion, thinly sliced; handful of cherry tomatoes, halved; zest and juice from half a lemon and small handful of mint leaves.

This dish sounds complicated but actually it’s really easy to prepareand only takes about fifteen minutes. First, cook the couscous and leave it to sit. Then season the cutlets with the oil, salt and pepper and cook in a hot frying pan for approximately three minutes,brushing them with the fig jam as they cook.

For the final minute of cooking, add the vinegar. When the cutlets are cooked, transfer them to a plate, but allow the remaining juice tobubble. Put your couscous in a bowl and mix it well with the tomatoes, beans, onion, mint, and lemon.

To make a gorgeous meal for two, put three cutlets on each plate, two generous spoonfuls of the couscous salad and drizzle the remaining juice on top. Don’t forget the candles, music and red wine.

No Valentine’s Day is complete without a divine dessert, and to whet your romantic appetite, may we suggest Chocolate Melting Cakes, because let’s be honest, nothing sets the mood better than melted chocolate.

For this recipe, you’ll need ten ounces of bittersweet chocolate,chopped; four tablespoons of unsalted butter; five eggs; half a cup of sugar; three-quarters of a cup of all-purpose flour; one and a half teaspoons of baking powder; pinch of salt; caramel sauce and coffee ice cream.

First heat the oven to 325 degrees F and grease an eight-cup baking tray. Melt the chocolate and the butter in a bowl over a pan of hot water. In another bowl, mix the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy, then add the flour, baking powder, salt, and melted chocolate. Mix until the mixture has a smooth texture, and then spoon it into the tray.

Cook them for about fifteen minutes. They’ll still look at bit moistwhen you take them from the oven, but that’s what you want. Leave them to sit for five minutes and serve them with the caramel sauce and coffee ice cream. Mmm, that’s a taste of heaven in your mouth. Where you choose to eat it is, of course, up to you and your lover.

 

Vocabulary

aphrodisiac (adj.) – erotic

folklore (n.) – legend, myth

Garden of Eden (id.) – garden of God from the Bible, the book Genesis

je ne sais quoi (id.) – French idiom, used in English to describe something special/romantic

feast (n.) – extravagant meal

raspberries (n.) – type of small red berry

cookies (n.) – biscuits

blender (n.) – a kitchen utensil that used to mix foods

gooey paste (id.) – sticky, liquid mixture

crush (v.) – flatten

a rolling pin (n.) – a kitchen utensil used to make dough

layer (n.) – row

brekkie (n.) – slang for breakfast

irresistible (adj.) – so good you can’t resist it

delectable (adj.) – gorgeous

V-day (n.) – Valentine’s Day

fade (v.) – dim

crave (v.) – to want

tender (adj.) – soft

luscious treat (id.) – beautiful or tasty food

tempting (adj.) – attractive

lamb cutlets (id.) – a special cut of lamb

tablespoons (n.) – big spoon

fig jam (n.) – jam made from figs

handful (adj.) – a small quantity that fits in the hand

prepare (v.) – to get ready

thinly sliced (id.) – cut very finely

zest (n.) – flavor

season (v.) – to add salt and pepper

brushing (v.) –cover

transfer (v.) – to move

bubble (v.) – to bring something to the boil

divine (adj.) – heavenly

whet (v.) – sharpen

sets the mood (id.) – creates the right atmosphere

chopped (v.) – cut up into small pieces

grease (v.) – to add oil to a pan so the food doesn’t stick to it

fluffy (adj.) – creamy

moist (adj.) – damp

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Let’s Talk!

  1. What do you like to do on Valentine’s Day?
  2. Do you think you can celebrate Valentine’s Day if you’re not in a relationship?
  3. Describe your perfect date?
  4. What’s the most romantic thing someone’s ever done for you?
  5. What’s the most romantic thing you’ve ever done for someone else?

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