Romantic Valentines Day Ideas
Happy Valentine’s Day for this Saturday. We don’t go all out for Valentine’s Day as I feel it can get a little corny but what I do love to do is cook something special at home. When my girls were little I’d help them make love heart shaped cakes and a special dinner for my husband when he’d come home from work. It’s a bit of fun and this year I wanted to share a dinner you can make easily at home for your partner. The steak can be cooked in no time and the chocolate mousse can be made ahead of time and chilled in the fridge. It’s good to have some valentines day ideas in mind as it’s getting closer. My oldest daughter is flying down from Sydney and hosting a Valentines Day barbeque for her friends at our house. I’d love the house to be overflowing with red roses like the ones in the picture below on the day. Nothing is more romantic than red roses.
Sharing one big plate of chocolate mousse with two spoons is a charming way to finish the evening washed down with a glass of champagne. My husband and daughter loved this chocolate mousse they said it’s the best they’ve tasted so it’s sure to impress your loved one. It doesn’t hurt when it’s paired with beautiful raspberries soaked in rosewater and sprinkled with a crunchy hazelnut praline. Very special.
Wherever you are and whatever you do on Valentine’s Day, enjoy it, if you’re a single lady or chap, make this special meal for yourself, you’ll feel a sense of achievement making these easy recipes. Treat yourself to a box of chocolates, bunch of flowers or have a glass of champagne, let’s clink glasses and toast the special person you are!
Steak Marinated in chilli & garlic with ricotta and basil pesto
2 scotch fillet steaks, olive oil, 1/4 tsp dried chilli flakes, 2 cloves garlic crushed, 4 radishes (one sliced thinly with a mandolin), keep others for garnish, shop bough basil pesto and ricotta.
Place the steaks in a bowl and add the olive oil, dried chilli flakes and garlic cloves, massage the steaks well. Heat a frypan or grill pan on top of the stove and cook the steaks to your liking. When ready place on a plate and cover with foil and a tea towel to rest for 5 minutes or so. Slice steaks on the diagonal and arrange on a platter, pour the steak juices over the top. Sprinkle ricotta, arrange sliced radish on top and drizzle with basil pesto. Arrange some whole radishes in between the steak and finish with a sprinkle of sea salt and a drizzle of olive oil.
Arrange your favorite lettuce on plate, drizzle with some olive oil, a squeeze of lemon and sea salt and gently toss.
3-4 potatoes, skin peeled or left on (I left mine on).
Preheat your oven to 180°C.
Cut a potato in half lengthwise, cut into slices then cut those slices into thin french fry strips. Place on a baking tray lined with baking paper, drizzle with olive oil and sea salt and roast in the oven until crisp and golden.
Chocolate Mousse with Salted Hazelnut Praline
for the chocolate mousse: 150g dark chocolate, roughly chopped, 1/2 cup thickened cream, 3 tblsp icing sugar, 1/2 cup plain yoghurt.
for the raspberries: 125g raspberries, 1 tsp caster sugar, 1/2 tsp rosewater.
for the praline: 50g caster sugar, 1/4 tsp salt, 50g roasted hazelnuts.
Praline: Preheat oven to 180°C, place hazelnuts in the oven for about five minutes until just golden. Heat the sugar and salt in a small pan until it melts and turns a pale caramel colour, add the hazelnuts and tip onto a lined baking tray. Cool completely, then break up in mortar and pestle.
Mousse: Melt the chocolate in a glass bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Whip the cream and icing sugar to soft peaks. Gently fold the cream into the cooled chocolate, followed by the yoghurt. Cover, keep chilled.
Raspberries: Place the raspberries with the caster sugar and rosewater in a small bowl, toss and set aside until the raspberries become a little juicy. Roughly mash some of the raspberries with a fork.
Pile the mousse onto a big plate, spoon over some juicy raspberries and sprinkle with praline. Serve with two spoons and a glass of champagne.
Chocolate Mousse Recipe: Bill Granger for Sunday Life Magazine.