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I think the most important factors for valentines recipes is that they are quick, easy and light on the washing up, not that the washing up should be a factor on Valentine’s Day. It can be taken care of tomorrow.

First recipe up is what I call my date steak. One Steak can feed two generously. A lush juicy steak is given a quick fry then rest in the salad dressing, where it oozes some of it meaty flavor into the dressing whilst also taking on some of the flavors of the dressing. The steak gets sliced finely and then strewn over a messy tangle of salad. Delicious and only moments of work. Steak is always a real treat and even though this recipe takes very little time to make you would never know it. It is a quick feast.

I call this recipe date steak as it can create an easy feast and one steak serves two. It is really steak tagliata which is just a thinly sliced steak, the steak gets a quick post cook marinade and this marinade then become the salad dressing.

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thinly sliced underdone steak with rocket salad

Yields2 Servings

 200 g Sirloin Steakstriploin or ribeye work well also
 2 tsp Olive oil
 Sea salt flakes & Cracked black pepperto taste
Salad & Dressing
 2 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
 2 tsp Balsamic vinegar
 1 tsp Thyme
 ½ tsp Chilli flakes
 Sea salt flakes to taste
 125 g Cherry Tomatoescut in half
 50 g Rocket leaves

1

Heat a griddle pan or other heavy based pan, over a high heat. Season the steak with salt and pepper and rub the oil into both sides of the steak. The lower it onto your hot pan it should sizzle straight away. if not leave your pan to heat up a little longer. Then cook for 2 minutes a side or until desired doneness.

2

Meanwhile, make the dressing/marinade by combining oil, balsamic vinegar, thyme chilli flakes and salt in a dish large enough to take the cherry tomatoes and the steak. Add the halved cherry tomatoes to the marinade cut side down.

3

When the steak has had its time in the pan transfer to the marinade to rest for a further 2 minutes aside. As it rests it will ooze it juices into the marinade whilst also taking on the flavours of the marinade.

4

Remove the steak to a cutting board. Add the rocket to the marinade/dressing and toss together to coat everything. Then strew a large platter with a tangle of rocket and drop the halved tomatoes randomly.

5

Slice the steak thinly and arrange the thin slices on top of the platter strewn with rocket and tomatoes.

Ingredients

 200 g Sirloin Steakstriploin or ribeye work well also
 2 tsp Olive oil
 Sea salt flakes & Cracked black pepperto taste
Salad & Dressing
 2 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
 2 tsp Balsamic vinegar
 1 tsp Thyme
 ½ tsp Chilli flakes
 Sea salt flakes to taste
 125 g Cherry Tomatoescut in half
 50 g Rocket leaves

Directions

1

Heat a griddle pan or other heavy based pan, over a high heat. Season the steak with salt and pepper and rub the oil into both sides of the steak. The lower it onto your hot pan it should sizzle straight away. if not leave your pan to heat up a little longer. Then cook for 2 minutes a side or until desired doneness.

2

Meanwhile, make the dressing/marinade by combining oil, balsamic vinegar, thyme chilli flakes and salt in a dish large enough to take the cherry tomatoes and the steak. Add the halved cherry tomatoes to the marinade cut side down.

3

When the steak has had its time in the pan transfer to the marinade to rest for a further 2 minutes aside. As it rests it will ooze it juices into the marinade whilst also taking on the flavours of the marinade.

4

Remove the steak to a cutting board. Add the rocket to the marinade/dressing and toss together to coat everything. Then strew a large platter with a tangle of rocket and drop the halved tomatoes randomly.

5

Slice the steak thinly and arrange the thin slices on top of the platter strewn with rocket and tomatoes.

Date Steak (steak tagliata)

Spaghetti Carbonara

Again, another quick and easy meal and of course you can have your lady and the tramp moment with this dish. It takes longer to eat than it does to make. By the time your pasta has cooked everything else will be ready to go.

This cheesy Italian Classic is simple, delicious and quick to make. By the time the pasta has cooked all will be ready to go.

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Pasta with cheesy sauce

Yields2 Servings

 250 g Spaghetti
 150 g Pancetta (or streaky bacon)Cut into lardons
 2 Eggs
 1 Egg yolk
 20 g Parmesan cheesePlus extra for serving
 1 tbsp Garlic oil
 Sea Salt flakes & Black pepper to taste

1

Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Salt then plunge in the spaghetti and cook according to packet instructions.

2

Meanwhile, Add the bacon lardons to a pan over a medium heat and allow to render down the fat, brown and go crispy. Turn off the heat under the pan and remove excess fat from the pan, leaving about a tablespoons worth behind. You may not need to do this step if your pancetta is lean. Add the garlic oil to the pan and mix to combine the fats and salt bacon nuggets.

3

In another bowl whisk together the eggs, yolk, cheese and a good grind of black pepper. Set aside until pasta is ready.

4

When pasta is al dente, before draining reserve a cup of starchy pasta cooking water. Tip the drained pasta into the pan of pancetta and toss it all together. Quickly pour the egg and cheese mixture into the pan as well constantly stirring for a moment to keep the sauce moving so that it coats all the pasta.

5

Using a pasta claw or tongs transfer to two serving bowls give each bowl another sprinkling of Parmesan and black pepper before eating.

Ingredients

 250 g Spaghetti
 150 g Pancetta (or streaky bacon)Cut into lardons
 2 Eggs
 1 Egg yolk
 20 g Parmesan cheesePlus extra for serving
 1 tbsp Garlic oil
 Sea Salt flakes & Black pepper to taste

Directions

1

Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Salt then plunge in the spaghetti and cook according to packet instructions.

2

Meanwhile, Add the bacon lardons to a pan over a medium heat and allow to render down the fat, brown and go crispy. Turn off the heat under the pan and remove excess fat from the pan, leaving about a tablespoons worth behind. You may not need to do this step if your pancetta is lean. Add the garlic oil to the pan and mix to combine the fats and salt bacon nuggets.

3

In another bowl whisk together the eggs, yolk, cheese and a good grind of black pepper. Set aside until pasta is ready.

4

When pasta is al dente, before draining reserve a cup of starchy pasta cooking water. Tip the drained pasta into the pan of pancetta and toss it all together. Quickly pour the egg and cheese mixture into the pan as well constantly stirring for a moment to keep the sauce moving so that it coats all the pasta.

5

Using a pasta claw or tongs transfer to two serving bowls give each bowl another sprinkling of Parmesan and black pepper before eating.

Spaghetti Carbonara

If you want to get ahead of the cooking then try this Fabulous dessert, strawberries in Prosecco jelly. I make this in champagne saucers and it really just looks like a glass of champagne. It is a gently set jelly, the Prosecco retains the bubbles so the jelly has the most gentle light tingle in your mouth as you eat. To vamp it up even more for your loved one, whip some cream gently, scoop out a passion fruit and fold through the softly whipped cream.Dollop spoonfuls of the cream as you eat your jelly. I laugh at the cheesiness but I call this ‘’Quivering with passion jellies’’ and I think it sums up this day perfectly.

Strawberries in prosecco jelly

Yields4 Servings

 4 Leaves gelatine (14g)
 500 ml prosecco or other fizzy wine
 150 g Caster sugar
 16 Medium sized strawberries

1

Soak the gelatine in cold water to soften.

2

In a measuring jug combine the prosecco and sugar stirring until the sugar has dissolved.

3

Heat 100ml of the sweetened prosecco in a small saucepan when hot but not boiling, squeeze the now squidgy gelatine to remove water then add into the hot prosecco and stir until it has dissolved. Discard the water the galantine was soaking in. Now stir this mixture into the jug of remaining cold prosecco.

4

Add berries to jelly vessel, Cut in half if very large. Pour the jelly equally between the 4 vessels and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until set.

5

Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before eating.

Ingredients

 4 Leaves gelatine (14g)
 500 ml prosecco or other fizzy wine
 150 g Caster sugar
 16 Medium sized strawberries

Directions

1

Soak the gelatine in cold water to soften.

2

In a measuring jug combine the prosecco and sugar stirring until the sugar has dissolved.

3

Heat 100ml of the sweetened prosecco in a small saucepan when hot but not boiling, squeeze the now squidgy gelatine to remove water then add into the hot prosecco and stir until it has dissolved. Discard the water the galantine was soaking in. Now stir this mixture into the jug of remaining cold prosecco.

4

Add berries to jelly vessel, Cut in half if very large. Pour the jelly equally between the 4 vessels and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until set.

5

Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before eating.

Strawberries in Prosecco Jelly
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6 Comments on “My top 3 Valentines Recipes…”

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