Yesterday we posted some extremely healthy recipes for a raw Valentine’s Day dinner. Definitely worth checking out if you don’t like stodgy food getting in the way of romance. For those who still yearn for something hot, we have prepared a delicious seafood menu which manages to be indulgent and delicate at the same time.

We have used seasonal ingredients which provide a refreshing reminder that Spring is not too far off. The dessert does have several elements to prepare, but is well worth the effort for a Valentine’s Day treat. These recipes are all meant to serve two. Obviously.

Let us know what you think!

Scallops with Chicory and Yuzu DressingSONY DSC

– 6 scallops

– Chicory (red or white – we used both)

– 1 passionfruit

– 1 teaspoon of coriander leaves, finely chopped.

– Extra virgin olive oil

– 1 teaspoon of yuzu (you can substitute this with grapefruit juice)

Chicory and Passion fruit dressing

1. Combine the Yuzu with 3 teaspoons of olive oil to make the dressing. Season with salt to taste.

2. Slice the chicory into thin strips and toss with the dressing in a bowl whilst you are cooking the scallops.

Scallops

1. Pour a ‘film’ of olive oil into a pan and bring to high heat (until the oil is almost smoking).

2. Season your scallops with salt and white pepper (black will do, but white is more delicate).

3. Place them into the hot oil, presentation side down (usually the larger side). The objective here is to caramelise the outermost layer, giving them a deep golden-brown colour.

4. Approximate timing is 3 minutes, but please check yourself and let the colour be your guide

5. Turn over, but do not caramelise on this sides, since this will overcook the scallops.

6. Test with fingertips after a minute or so; the scallops should be firm but not rubbery, with a little bit of give.

7. Just before you remove them from the heat, a squeeze of lemon juice is recommended. This will provide a contrast to the oiliness of the pan, whilst bringing out more of the scallops’ fantastic flavour.

8. Halve the passionfruit, scooping out the seeds and flesh into a bowl with the chopped coriander.

9. Place the scallops on a bed of salad and drizzle with the passionfruit and coriander mixture on top.

 

Spiced Hake with Pan-Fried SproutsSONY DSC

– 2 hake fillets

– 3 tbsp garam masala

– Pinch of salt

– 150g sprouts, finely sliced

– 1 red chilli, seeds removed, sliced

– 1 clove garlic, finely chopped

– 1 lemon, halved.

– 50g chorizo, diced

– Olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.

2. Spread the garam masala and salt on a plate and roll the hake fillets in it, making sure they are well covered.

3. Heat a tablespoon of oil in an oven-proof frying pan over a medium-high heat.

4. Once the pan is hot, place the fillets in the pan and cook for 2 minutes on each side. Transfer to the hot oven for 15 minutes.

5. Meanwhile, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a wok or large frying pan on a medium heat and fry the chilli and chorizo for 1 minute.

6. Add the garlic with a squeeze of lemon juice and fry for a further minute before adding the sprouts and stir-frying for 5 minutes or until tender.

7. Before serving, check that the fish is cooked through (look for defined fakes and a firm texture).

8. Place the sprouts in the middle of the plate and serve with the hake on top along with a slice of lemon.

White Chocolate and Cardamom Panna Cotta with Mini Meringues, Strawberry Jelly and Mascarpone Sorbet

– 125ml full fat milk

– 125ml double cream

– Zest of 1 lemon, thick strips

– 1 vanilla pod

– 5 cardamom pods

– 40g white chocolate

– 30g caster sugar

– 2 leaves of gelatine

– 150g strawberries

– 1/2tbl water

– 1/4tbl sugar

– 1 tbl agar agar

– 85 ml pink champagne

– 2 egg whites

– 113g caster sugar

– 65g caster sugar

– 88ml water

– 1/2tbsp vodka

– 63g mascarpone

Panna cotta:

1. Heat the milk, sugar, cardamom, zest, vanilla pod (with its seeds removed) until scalded.

2. Take off the heat and leave to infuse for at least 15 minutes.

3. Soak the gelatine in cold water.

4. Strain the mixture, return to a low heat and add the cream while warming it through.

5. Gradually whisk in the white chocolate until melted.

6. Lift the gelatine leaves from the water and add to the mixture.

7. Pour into glasses to set and chill for at least one hour before pouring the jelly on top.

8. The panna cotta needs about 3 hours in total to set.

Jelly:

1. Hull and quarter the strawberries.

2. Pop them into a pan with the water and the sugar.

3. Bring them to a gentle simmer until they release colour and soften.

4. Strain and push gently through a sieve, discard the rest of the fruit.

5. Place back into the pan and sprinkle with the agar agar.

6. Heat without stirring and then simmer for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the flakes dissolve.

7. Add the champagne and, once cooled, pour into the glasses over the pan cotta.

8. Leave in the fridge to set (15-20 minutes).

9. The panna cotta needs about 3 hours in total to set.

Mini meringues:

1. Preheat oven to 110°C and line a baking sheet with a non-stick parchment.

2. Whisk the egg whites until stiff and dry.

3. Once by one, add a tablespoon of sugar for each egg white and whisk after each addition until stiff.

4. Add half the remaining sugar and whisk in (localised whisking) until it turns shiny and glossy.

5. Add the rest of the sugar and gently fold in.

6. Pipe mixture onto the baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes until the meringues lift off easily of the paper.

7. Leave to cool.

Sorbet:

1. Dissolve the sugar in the water and boil for 2 minutes, leave to cool.

2. Add the vodka.

3. Whip the syrup into the mascarpone and

Churn in an ice cream maker

OR

To make by hand, freeze for 2 hours in a freezer safe container, stirring with a fork every 30 minutes to break up any ice-crystals.

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