Romantic Recipes for Couples

Romantic Recipes for Couples
Written by Sarah

The fun is in cooking and eating together. We draw up a list of interesting and easy-to-make recipes for a romantic dinner

Baby Tomato Gazpacho With An Asparagus Flan

(Chilled soup of ripened baby tomatoes with an asparagus accompaniment)

Serves: Two

Time required: 20 minutes

For The Gazpacho :

500 g ripened baby tomatoes, 1 small clove garlic, 1 small red bell pepper, 1 tsp olive oil, salt to taste, a few fresh basil leaves, 20 ml white wine

For The Asparagus Flan :

a small bundle fresh asparagus, 100 g carrots, a few sprigs parsley, 1 tsp gelatin, 20 ml eggless mayo

For The Gazpacho :

Cut the tomatoes and set aside the pulp and seeds. Mix together the rest of the gazpacho ingredients with the chopped tomatoes in a blender. Puree the mixture until smooth and then strain into a glass bowl. Also strain the seeds and pulp onto the cold soup. Chill and serve.

For The Asparagus Flan :

Blanch the asparagus in hot salted water, refresh and cut off the hard stalks. Puree half the quantity and set aside. Dice the carrots, parsley and a few asparagus tips. Set aside. Soak the gelatin and then melt in a double boiler. Mix the mayo with the puree and the vegetables. Fold in the gelatin and chill. Put this mixture into a small flan tin and leave to set.

To serve the Gazpacho :

Unmould the flan in a soup plate. Pour the chilled gazpacho around the flan and serve.

Note: Use ripe red tomatoes only. After adding the gelatin do not whisk too hard as it may curdle.

Flamed Prawns In Liqueur Butter

(Prawns pan grilled and served coated with a butter sauce laced with Cointreau)

Serves: Two

Time required: 20 minutes

6 large prawns

100 ml orange juice

1 small piece cinnamon

50 g butter

a pinch of brown sugar

10 ml Cointreau (An orange flavoured liqueur)

10 ml white wine

salt and pepper to taste

Clean and devein the prawns. Set aside.

For The Liqueur Butter:

Heat the orange juice in a heavy bottom pan and reduce to one-fourth. Add the stick of cinnamon and the sugar to it. Cube some of the butter and add slowly to the orange mixture. Remove from heat and add the Cointreau after it cools.

In a pan, heat the remaining butter and sauté the prawns. Season and increase heat. Flame the prawns with the white wine.

To assemble, place each prawn in one China soup spoon and pour some Cointreau butter over it. Garnish with a sprig of mint.

Note: Never overcook prawns as they will harden. This starter can also be served on a toothpick with a skewered mint leaf.

Aubergine Tzatziki

(Greek salad made with crispy fried aubergine layered with yoghurt)

Serves: Two

Time required: 15 minutes

200 g aubergine

(eggplant/ brinjals)

150 g yoghurt

a small clove garlic

salt to taste

a few sprigs mint

(about 10 leaves)

oil for frying

a pinch of sesame seeds

Slice the aubergine in rounds evenly. Sprinkle with salt and drain out the excess water.

For the Tzatziki dressing, whisk the yoghurt with a pinch of garlic and salt and chill. Clean the mint leaves. Set aside. Heat the oil and fry the aubergine until crisp. Drain on paper to remove any excess oil. Assemble the salad by alternating layers of aubergine with mint leaves and the chilled yoghurt dressing. Garnish with sesame seeds and mint leaves and serve.

Note: Add salt to the aubergine before frying, as this is the only way it will be crisp. Cut the aubergine into even thickness to enjoy the salad.

Whole Cantonese Style Steamed Fish

(Whole fish marinated in Cantonese spices and steamed in banana leaves)

Serves: Two

Time required: 35 minutes plus standing time

400 g Rawas/ any medium-sized firm fish

For the Marinade:

1 tsp fish sauce

2 tsp soya sauce

2 tsp oyster sauce

2 bird’s eye chillies

1 star anise

1 tsp sesame oil

salt to taste

50 g carrots

a few sprigs celery

a small piece fresh ginger

banana leaves for steaming

Clean the gut and gash the fish. Mix in all the ingredients to form the marinade. Set aside. Julienne the carrot, celery and ginger and add to the marinade. Mix well. Place the fish in a steaming tray and cover both sides with the marinade mix. Let it stand for at least two hours. Wrap the fish in the banana leaves. When ready to serve steam the fish in a wok or a bamboo steamer for approximately 20 to 30 minutes or until cooked.

To make the serving sauce, remove the jus of the steamed fish and thicken with a pinch of corn flour. Serve hot garnished with parsley or coriander.

Note: If the fish is too large to handle cut it into portions. While steaming, ensure that the boiling water doesn’t come in contact with the item being steamed.

Balinese Clay Pot Curry

(Red Balinese curry soured with tamarind)

Serves: Two

Time required: 30 minutes

50 g green brinjals

50 g baby corn

50 g broccoli

1/4 packet mushrooms or flat mushrooms

10 g or 1-2 fresh red chillies

1 small clove garlic

a small piece ginger

5 g basil leaves

2 tsp oil

100 ml coconut milk

1 tsp tamarind pulp

lemon grass and a few coriander stalks for the garnish

Cut all the vegetables into cubes and blanch in salted water. Quarter the mushrooms and sauté. Set aside.

For the curry paste, dry roast the chillies, garlic and ginger in a pan. Add the rest of the ingredients into a blender or a mortar and pestle to obtain a fine paste. Puree the basil leaves and set aside.

Heat the oil in a flat-bottomed vessel and add the paste. Fry the paste over low heat and then add the coconut milk, basil puree and tamarind pulp. Simmer the curry for 10 minutes.

When ready to serve, add the blanched vegetables. Garnish with sliced lemon grass and coriander stalks. Serve with steamed rice.

Note: Use very little water when extracting coconut milk, as this will keep it creamy. Always add vegetables to a dish just before serving, as this will keep them crisp and they will retain their original colour.

Dacquoise Of Fresh Strawberry

(Fresh strawberries served on meringue with cream)

Serves: Two

Time required: 20 minutes

25 g ready meringues

1 box strawberries

25 g whipped cream

50 g fresh strawberry jam

sugar to taste

Rinse the strawberries in cold water and pat dry. Slice them and flambé in sugar. Lay a bed of the ready meringue and layer with the jam, flambéed strawberries, and whipped cream. Garnish the strawberry meringue with fresh strawberries and chill the dessert in the refrigerator.

Note: Use meringue, which is crisp, and in humid weather store the strawberries in an airtight container. Use sweet and succulent strawberries.

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