While Valentine’s Day might be over and done with, there’s no reason why you can’t prolong the sweetness of the holiday by indulging in a little home cooking. During the winter months, partaking in a little after-work dating might seem like the last thing on your mind, cosy nights in taking precedent when it’s cold out. If you want to socialize without venturing outdoors, however, your kitchen might hold all of the answers. After all, there’s nothing more impressive than whipping up a home cooked dish for a date.
Although we all have a list of tried and tested dishes that we turn to on date night, sampling something new can help to change things up and bit and introduce you to a whole new type of menu. Once you try these recipes once, you might not venture out for food again.
Let’s face it, when it’s blowing a storm outside, you need something comforting to put in your belly and there’s no better way to do this than with a bowl of home cooked chicken soup. While you might have your own family recipe that you swear by, this variation on the dish adds a little oriental spice into the mix, resulting in a soup that is both comforting and incredibly delicious. Stuffed with Asian vegetables, slow cooked stock and the most tender chicken you will ever taste, this is a dish that you might want to cook all of the time, date or no date.
Sometimes, however, you really want to pull out all of the stops and if that’s the case, then you can’t go wrong with a side of steak. This rib-eye steak is quite possibly the best around, slowly marinated with lemon, garlic, chilli, rosemary and soy sauce. When you cook it in the pan, expect that marinade to get nice and sticky and really crisp up. You can serve this solo or with a healthy dollop of homemade pesto for a real flavor explosion. Your date will never forget it.
If you want to pull out all of the stops, then tackling seafood is a surefire way to get your date’s attention. Served with a side of herby butter, these seared scallops taste just as good as they look and won’t leave you slaving away in the kitchen. With the recipe calling for any variety of herbs, it is up to you what flavor combination you serve up with your scallops, although sage, tarragon or thyme might work the best. Completed with some seasonal greens, this is truly the dish of kings and it won’t cost you much extra time, either. Sneaky.
Some flavor combinations are simply so good that they deserve some kind of medal. These roasted sweet potatoes are exactly like that. Slow roasted in the oven and topped with a mixture of cheese, chilli and spring onions, the potatoes pack a serious flavor punch. While they’re great on their own, you can also try adding in an extra side of bacon or grilled fish if you’re looking for something a little more meaty. A no-nonsense recipe, these sweet potatoes practically do all of the work themselves, leaving you much more time to focus on what really matters.
Nothing shows affection like a huge bowl of comfort food and if you really want to show how you feel, then you can’t do it better than with pasta. Accompanied by fresh asparagus and a creamy, vegan sauce, the recipe requires very little effort and can be whipped up well in advance. Using entirely natural, non-dairy ingredients, the meal is actually a lot more healthy than you would think, making the question of going back for seconds a little easier to figure out.
If you want a cook-in-one recipe, then you need this fish parcel dish. Steamed in individual bags, all of the ingredients are cooked at the same time; all you need to do is prepare them beforehand. Topped with a Thai marinade, the dish is packed full of ginger, coriander, soy sauce and chilli. Even though it might still be cold out, you can pretend that you’re in much sunnier climes.