Tantalize your loved ones taste buds this Valentine’s night with a range of romantic dishes ideal for a date night. If you are planning a romantic night in this Valentine’s Day and don’t know what to cook or want to try something new here are a few tasty recipes.

Tapas restaurants are becoming increasing popular, and for a good reason! Tapas are a great date night food as they can be shared with your loved ones. Tapas are a terrific way of having a little bit of everything if you have different food preferences.  As tapas are smaller portions, five dishes will be plenty! I have chosen recipes that are not only relatively healthy but simple to prepare too…trust me! Don’t be afraid to freeze the leftovers or use them for lunches the next day.

 

Savoury course ideas:

Thai Fish Cakes

  •  Great eaten cold or warmed up for lunch the next day!
  •   Can be frozen and used another day if you have leftovers
  •   Makes 8-10 cakes
Shopping list:
300 g of fish (Salmon, haddock, whiting-or a mixture of a few)
1 large onion (or 3 spring onions)
50g of chopped green beans (spinach, broccoli or other greens can be used instead)
2 tbsp. of red curry paste (available in most supermarkets)
1 handful of coriander (to your own taste)
1 tsp. of agave nectar (honey or regular table sugar are good substitutes)
1 tsp. fish sauce (soy sauce can be used if preferable- look for low sodium version)
1 generous squeeze of Lime (alternatively lemon juice can be used)
Chilli- to taste1 tbsp. of olive oil/ rapeseed oil

Method:

  1. Combine the fish, onion, chilli, curry paste, coriander, agave nectar, fish sauce, and lime juice in a blender.
  2. Transfer contents into a mixing bowl and add in the green beans.
  3. Split the mixture into 16 pieces.
  4. First roll into balls and then flatten in the palm of your hand to make patties.
  5. Place on a plate and leave to chill in fridge for 30 minutes.
  6. Heat oil in a pan and cook fish cakes for 1-2 minutes until golden brown.

 

 Chicken patties:

  •   Only cook the number of patties that you need- and freeze the leftovers for another time
  •   Makes: 6 burgers
Shopping list:
500 g chicken/ turkey mince
1 onion (finely diced)
1 carrot (finely diced)
1 celery stalk (finely diced)
225g (1 cup) of roughly chopped spinach
1 handful of diced parsley
1 tbsp. soy sauce (reduced salt if possible)1tbsp of olive oil

Method:

  1. Add onion, carrot celery along with a dash of olive oil to a pan and heat until soft and golden brown in colour ( be careful not to have the heat too high as it will burn the ingredients).
  2. Add in the chicken/ turkey mince.
  3. Pour in the soy sauce.
  4. Combine the mince with the spinach and parsley.
  5. Form the mixture in 6 patties.
  6. Place the patties into the fridge for approximately 2 hours to allow them to firm up.
  7. Place the patties in a pan on low to medium heat with a small amount of oil and cook for 5-10 minutes on either side to ensure chicken/ turkey is cooked well.

Optional:

-Why not coat the patties in sesame seeds to add more flavour.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Green Pea fritters

  •  This is a tasty recipe that can be prepared in less than 20 minutes.
  •  Makes: 6 fritters
Shopping list:
300 g of green peas (frozen peas are fine)
1 handful of chopped parsley
2 eggs
Zest of 1 lemon
150g of grated Emmental or other hard pasteurised cheese (soft &/or unpasteurised cheese is not recommended during pregnancy).
2 tbsp. of flour (brown flour/wholemeal would be best)

Method:

  1. Crush the peas by hand using a fork (do not crush into a puree)
  2. Combine the peas, parsley, egg, lemon zest, and flour in a bowl.
  3. Add the cheese in.
  4. Place spoonfuls of the mixture on a baking tray lined with parchment or greaseproof paper.
  5. Bake in oven on medium heat (approx. 150-180°c) for 10-15 minutes.

Serving suggestions:

Mixed salad – Grated carrot, diced tomatoes and basil salsa, Crème fraiche (look for low fat option and add some herbs for extra flavour e.g. chives).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Root vegetable gratin:

  • This is a great recipe to increase your family’s vegetable intake. You can swap and change the vegetables included for other root vegetables.
  • Serves: 4
Shopping List:
2 large potato (peeled and cooked)
1 large sweet potato (peeled and cooked)
4 whole beetroot (peeled and cooked) – you can buy these vacuum packed.
250 mL. tub of reduced fat crème fraiche & 250 mL. low fat/ skimmed milk
1 garlic clove peeled and diced thinly
Pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp. rapeseed oil

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to approximately 180°C. Place the oil in a baking dish and use a piece of kitchen towel to spread it around the dish to grease it.
  2. Slice the potato thinly, and slice the beetroot and sweet potato slightly thicker.
  3. Layer the potato, beetroot and sweet potato slices into dish.
  4. Whisk together crème fraiche, milk, nutmeg and garlic and pour over the sliced vegetables.
  5. Bake for approximately 1 hour, until the top is nice and golden brown.

Dessert:

This guilt free glossy creamy mousse is the perfect dessert for a chocoholic on Valentine’s Day. Don’t be put off by the avocado, it is used as a substitute for eggs and cream and adds a really delicious velvety texture. It also contains good fats, and vitamin E. Cocoa is high in magnesium and iron which are both important for producing energy from food.

 

 

 

 

 

Chocolate and avocado mousse:

  • Makes 8-10 pots
Shopping list:
30g honey
2 ripe avocados (important choose soft fruit)
Juice and zest of 1 large orange
1 tsp. vanilla extract
40g cocoa powder
Pinch of Cinnamon

Method:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a food blender (add the honey in first and then the avocado followed by the other ingredients).
  2. Blend for 20-30 seconds until a smooth consistency is seen
  3. Add in a little water or skimmed milk to loosen the mousse if necessary.
  4. Place mixture into serving bowls and set in fridge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Frozen yoghurt

  • 1 tub yields 1 serving
Shopping list:
2 tubs of natural low fat yoghurt
Handful of fresh or frozen fruit boiled for at least 1 minute ( mixed berries , bananas or passion fruit work well)
Honey to sweeten (if necessary)

 Method:

  1. Combine the ingredients in a food processor.
  2. Spoon back into yoghurt containers or any small container will do.
  3. OPTIONAL Place a wooden paddle stick/ skewer (this will aid as a handle).
  4. Place in freezer overnight.
  5. Garnish with leftover berries, mint leaves.