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Valentine’s Day Dinner Recipes For Two

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Now we know you’ve probably taken a look at our Valentine’s Day Dining Guide here, however if you’re not feeling up to the drama of a night out, why not have a romantic dinner at home? Our food contributor Fiona Archibold has whipped up some absolutely delish meals that’ll set the mood for February 14th: tuna tartare, filet mignon and of course a decadent chocolate ganache fondue for two. It’s time to get the nice silver out ladies and prepare for a spot of at-home romance…

Valentine's Day Dinner Recipes For Two

Tuna Tartare with Oysters for Two

Ingredients & Method:

  • Use your sharpest knife to slice and dice 250g fresh tuna belly into 1/2cm pieces.
  • Gently mix in 25g very finely chopped red onion, 25g shredded spring onion plus with 1 tablespoon chopped dill adding fleur de sel and freshly ground pepper to taste.
  • For extra Valentines heat, add 1 finely chopped red chilli.

To Serve:

  • Place a heart shaped cookie cutter onto serving plates.
  • Fill with half of the tuna mixture packing gently for a generous heart shape.
  • Carefully remove cutter, garnish heart with shredded carrots and radishes.
  • Repeat process with remaining tuna on the second plate
  • Strew serving plate with fresh herbs, finely chopped peppers or flowers to finish.
  • Serve with mini gherkins and oysters of course!

Fiona’s Top Tip:
Order a stunning ready to serve tuna tartare platter, as well as a freshly shucked oyster platter directly from Market & Platters (home delivery included on orders above AED 400).

Valentine's Day Dinner Recipes For Two

Beef Filet Mignon, Wild Mushroom Crostini, Buttered Asparagus for Two

Ingredients & Method to cook the perfect Filet Mignon:

  • Remove beef filets from the fridge 1 hour before cooking, marinade in a splash of olive oil with springs of thyme or rosemary. Warm a serving plate in the oven preheated to 100C.
  • Once you are ready to cook the filets (30 minutes before serving to allow meat to rest and juices to settle), heat a cast iron skillet or thick based non-stick pan (without any oil or butter) until smoking.
  • Sprinkle filets generously with sea salt crystals (smoked Maldon, fleur de sel).
  • Place the filets onto the smoking pan and press down with tongs, this will seal and sear the meat beautifully.
  • After 1-2 minutes (you will need to peek underneath to see if the meat is seared and browned, turn over and repeat process).
  • Use a tongs to hold your beef filets whilst you brown and sear the edges to give a restaurant style finish.
  • Place meat on the pre-warmed plate in the oven, allow to rest for 10 minutes for rare, 15 minutes for medium and 20 for well cone.
  • This is truly when the magic occurs as the meat fibres have a chance to ‘relax’ and tenderise, juices rare evenly distributed throughout the meat resulting in a perfectly tender juicy filet. 

Buttery Lemon Asparagus:

  • Snap the woody end from the asparagus, wash and steam for approximately 3 minutes until just tender (this can be done in advance and finished in the pan last minute).
  • Place asparagus in the pan used for the meat with a teaspoon of salted butter to pick up leftover yummy juices.
  • Heat through and finish with a good squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Add a generous grating of lemon zest with fleur de sel and ground black pepper to taste.

Wild Mushroom Crostini:

  • Wipe 300g chanterelles or forest mix mushrooms with a damp cloth. (Try to avoid immersing mushrooms completely in water as they become soggy and flaccid – not a good look or taste!).
  • Melt a good knob of approximately 15g butter in a warm pan, toss in mushrooms with 1 clove finely chopped garlic, 1/2 teaspoon fleur de sel and freshly ground black pepper.
  • Toss intermittently until mushrooms sizzle and start to turn golden – this process of tossing and turning may take up to 10 minutes – the aromas are sensational. Remove mushrooms into a warm bowl. Keep warm in pre-warmed oven with the beef.
  • Cut 2 diagonal slices from a traditional baguette, brush lightly with olive oil, rub lightly with the cut side of a halved garlic clove.
  • Place baguette slices onto the mushroom pan to soak up any remaining juices, turn heat to high and toast lightly for 1 minute each side until golden.

To Assemble & Serve

  • Place filet mignon onto a slate or plate, pile mushrooms onto warm toasted crostini, place alongside beef.
  • Carefully use tongs to place asparagus alongside beef.
  • Drizzle resting juices over each filet and butter lemon juices over asparagus.

Optional: tiny heart of salted fresh herb butter placed on the steak.

Valentine's Day Dinner Recipes For Two

Warm Chocolate Ganache Fondue for Two 

Ingredients & Method:

  • Break 150g plain chocolate (70% cocoa solids) into small pieces.
  • Warm 150ml double cream in a thick based pan until just bubbling, remove from heat.
  • Tip broken chocolate into cream and use a wire whisk or wooden spoon to mix briskly until all chocolate pieces have melted and the ‘Ganache’ is smooth, silky & glossy.

To Serve:

  • Transfer to a pre-warmed bowl wide enough for 2 hands to dip strawberries, mango slices, meringues, mini shortbread or langue des chats biscuits.

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