Forget grand gestures and costly cards, flowers and gifts – rustle up a tasty treat in the kitchen this Valentine’s Day and you’ll be smashing it out of the park.
There’s nothing wrong with spoiling somebody, but it doesn’t have to cost the earth. The simple things can be just as effective – even more so in actual fact. Whether it’s beans on toast by candlelight or full mashings with a splash of fizz, showing you care never tasted so good…..Try these romantic recipes and nail it this Monday!
Romantic Recipes – Truffle oil mushroom wellington – ready in 60 mins or less
If you’re looking for a veggie option for your next mid-week meal, this mushroom wellington recipe with truffle oil and turmeric coconut oil from Zing Foods is a must-try.
It can be easily prepared in under 1 hour and serves 4.
PREP TIME: 15 mins. COOKING TIME: 10 mins hob, 20-30 mins oven
INGREDIENTS: 800g portobello mushrooms, 2 medium sized red onions, 2 garlic cloves, 15g dried wild mushrooms, 3 tbsp Mellow Turmeric Coconut Oil, 200ml Marsala wine, 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp truffle oil, 30g dried cranberries, 30g chestnuts, 800g puff pastry, milk to glaze, salt and pepper to taste.
- Set the oven to 190C or 175C fan.
- Chop up the onions, garlic, mushrooms, cranberries and chestnuts.
- On a medium heat, warm a large saucepan and melt 2 tbsp of the Mellow Turmeric Coconut Cooking Oiltogether with the onions & garlic – sweat for 3-5 minutes.
- Add the dried mushrooms, marsala & balsamic. Fry gently until all of the juices are released and reduced. It is essential to make the mixture as dry as possible; this will help the pastry rise.
- Once all the liquid has been reduced, remove from heat and add the cranberries, chestnut, 1 tbsp Mellow Turmeric Coconut Cooking Oil and 1 tbsp truffle oil. Season with salt and pepper and let the mixture cool down to make handling the pastry easier.
- While the mixture is cooling, remove the puff pastry from the fridge and let it warm slightly. When the mixture has cooled, roll out the pastry into a large rectangle and evenly distribute the mushroom mixture to the centre. Fold the top and bottom edges over to create a top and bottom edge, and then roll the remaining sides into a log until the edges seam together into a classic Wellington shape. You can, if preferred, also create individual parcels. Decorate with pastry lines, stars or little hearts for a romantic twist.
- Place on a baking tray with baking paper and brush the surface with a milk of choice. Bake in the oven for approx 20-30minutes until the pastry has risen and is golden.
- Serve with vegetable sides and gravy. Add some extra mushrooms to the gravy to complement the dish.
The mellow turmeric flavoured coconut cooking oil – infused with smoked paprika, ground cumin, ground cardamom, cayenne, garlic and coriander – is available to order now on Zing Foods’ website priced at £5 for a 75g pot good for 6 servings.
Romantic Recipes – Creamy mushroom-on-toast – ready in under 15 mins
If you’re looking for a quick and easy veggie breakfast or light bite, incorporate 2022’s ingredient of the year into your diet. This creamy mushroom on toast recipe with turmeric coconut oil from Zing Foods can be easily prepared in 15 minutes!
PREP TIME: 5 mins. COOKING TIME: 10 mins
INGREDIENTS: 300g mushrooms (oyster, shiitake and king oyster are recommended but chestnut and portobello work just as well), 2 tbsp turmeric spiced cooking oil, 200ml coconut milk, 1 medium ciabatta (or 2 small ones), 2 garlic cloves, parsley to garnish, salt and pepper to taste.
- Slice the ciabatta through the middle to create two even halves. These then need to be grilled until crispy and lightly brown on both sides.
- Meanwhile, melt 1 tbsp of the coconut oil and add the crushed garlic and whole mushrooms. If using portobello or chestnut mushrooms, then roughly chop them first.
- When the mushrooms start to cook, they will release liquid, but if the pan is too dry, add a tbsp or two of water until the liquid is released.
- After about 5 minutes, add the coconut milk and gently simmer until it reduces and thickens.
- Once the sauce is thick, add the last spoonful of spiced oil to melt in those extra flavours. If desired, season with salt and pepper.
- Serve hot, pour the sauce over the bread and top with the mushrooms. Finish with some parsley to garnish.
Zing Foods’ coconut cooking oil – flavoured with mellow turmeric and infused with smoked paprika, ground cumin, ground cardamom, cayenne, garlic and coriander – is available to order now on Zing Foods’ website priced at £5 for a 75g pot good for 6 servings.
Romantic Recipes – ZENB Mushroom Stroganoff
- 320g ZENB yellow pea fusilli
- ½ tbsp Olive oil
- 1 White onion, diced
- 4 Garlic cloves, minced
- 300g Chestnut mushrooms, sliced
- 1 tsp Dried rosemary
- 65g Cashew nuts, soaked in boiling water for 30 minutes
- 300ml Milk of choice
- 300ml Silken tofu
- 1 tbsp Tamari
- 1 tbsp Nutritional yeast
- 1 Lemon, juiced
- 100g Baby spinach
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Flat leaf parsley, chopped
1. Place the cashews in a heatproof bowl and cover in boiling water. Leave to soak for 30 minutes until the cashews have softened and then drain.
2. Meanwhile, heat a frying pan with the olive oil over a medium heat before adding the onion and garlic. Sauté for 10 minutes or until the onions are soft and translucent.
3. Add the mushrooms and rosemary, mix well and leave to cook for 10 minutes or until the mushrooms have softened and reduced, stirring occasionally. Once cooked, set aside.
4. Cook the ZENB yellow pea fusilli according to packet instructions.
5. Make the creamy gravy by adding the softened cashews, milk of choice, silken tofu, lemon juice, tamari and nutritional yeast to a high-powered blender and blitz until silky smooth.
6. Add the gravy to the mushroom and onion mix and stir through. Season with salt and pepper.
7. Remove from the heat and stir in the spinach until wilted.
8. Mix in the pasta, adding a little of the pasta water if the sauce is too thick.
9. Serve straight away, garnished with chopped flat leaf parsley.
If you are looking to go that extra mile and make this dish extra special, why not try the following:
- Swap out the dried rosemary and use the fresh herb instead.
- Use a mixture of exotic and locally grown mushrooms (when in season) to add more depth of flavour to the dish. Keep the quantity the same at 300g, just vary the variety rather than just sticking to chestnut mushrooms.
- If you aren’t vegan, try finishing your sauce with a splash of cream for extra creaminess
Romantic Recipes – ZENB Beetroot Pasta
- 340g ZENB penne pasta
- 100g Vegan feta ‘cheese’
- 600g Fresh beetroot, washed, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 Red onion, peeled and roughly chopped
- 4 Large garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 tsp Chilli flakes
- 125ml Milk of choice
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Crispy Garlic Breadcrumbs
- 50g Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 Garlic clove, minced
- 1 tbsp Flat leafparsley, chopped
1. Preheat on oven to 180oc.2. Place all the pasta sauce ingredients on a baking tray (except the milk of choice), toss until combined.
2. Roast in the oven for 40 minutes or until starting to caramelise, turning the vegetables halfway.
3. Once the vegetables are roasted, transfer the sauce to a blender, add the milkand blitz until silky smooth.
4. To make the garlic breadcrumbs, add all the ingredients to a small non –stick frying pan (except the parsley) and fry on a high heat until golden brown. Stir frequently to avoid them burning. Mix through the herbs once golden brown.
5. Cook your ZENB penne pasta according to packet instructions. Stir through the beetrootsauce and serve topped with crumbled vegan feta ‘cheese’ and the crispy garlic breadcrumbs
Romantic Recipes – Leek and Mushroom Pithiver
Prep time: 20 minutes. Cooking time: 30 minutes. Serves: 2-4
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 leek, thinly sliced (including green tips)
- 1 butternut squash, cubed
- 1 tsp dried thyme and dried rosemary
- 250g mushrooms, mixed
- 4 sage leaves
- 125ml vegan cream
- 1 tbsp tamari mixed with 1 tbsp melted vegan butter
- 1 sheet of puff pastry (375g)
1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC fan. Roughly dice the butternut into cubes, place on a baking tray, drizzle in olive oil, salt, dried rosemary and thyme, toss to coat, then pop in the oven for 20 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, chop the leeks and mushrooms, chop two of the sage leaves then add all to a frying pan with a drizzle of olive oil, season heavily with salt and pepper and fry for 5 minutes. Once the butternut has cooked, add to the pan with the leeks then add the vegan cream, tossing to ensure everything is coated. Turn off the heat and leave to cool.
3. Remove the pastry from the fridge and roll out onto a flat surface. Fold the sheet of pastry in half, then cut a circle shape (this will form the base and the dome on top) place one of the circles on a lined baking tray, then spoon on the filling leaving a 2cm gap around the very edge so you can seal the pie. Once you’ve added the filling to one half, add the other circle of pastry on top and pinch the edges together, you can create a pattern or simply overlap and pinch with a fork.
4. Brush the melted butter and tamari mix over the pie crust, score with a pattern then place in the fridge to cool for around 5 minutes (enough time to preheat the oven to 200ºC fan). Pop in the oven on the middle tray for around 25-30 minutes or until the pastry has turned golden and flakey. Enjoy with gravy or with steamed veggies.
Romantic Recipes – Individual Steak and Cambozola Wellingtons
Preparation time 30 minutes. Cooking time 12-15 minutes. Serves 2
You will need
- 1/2 small onion
- 100g chestnut mushrooms
- 1 tsp butter
- 2 beef sirloin steaks
- 2 sheets puff pastry
- 100g Cambozola, sliced
- 1 medium egg, beaten
Finely chop the onion and mushrooms separately, using a food processor if necessary. Cook the onion in the butter, for 5 minutes, until softened. Add the mushrooms, season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Keep cooking until there is no moisture left from the mushrooms. Set aside to cool.
Turn up the heat, season the steak with sea salt and freshly ground pepper, then sear in the same pan, for 1 minute on each side. Set aside too cool.
Preheat the oven to 220ºC / 200ºC fan/gas mark 7.
Cut out 2 ovals from the pastry that are 3cm larger than the steaks. Then cut out 2 more ovals that are about 5cm larger than the steak.
Place the smaller ovals onto a baking sheet and place the steaks into the centre of each. Spoon over the mushrooms, keeping them on top of the steak. Top with the Cambozola.
Brush a little of the beaten egg around the exposed pastry, then place the second piece of pastry over the top. Press around the edges then trip off the excess pastry and seal the edges with a fork. Score the tops with a crisscross pattern.
Brush all over with the beaten egg and use a sharp knife to cut small holes into the top of each Wellington.
Bake in the oven for 17 minutes for medium-rare or 20 minutes for medium. Rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Romantic Recipes – Chocolate and Pear Pudding with Cambozola Chocolate Sauce
Preparation time 15 minutes. Cooking time 20-25 minutes. Serves 2. You will need
- 2 small ripe pears, peeled
- 50g self-raising flour
- 3 tsp cocoa powder
- 50g caster sugar
- 1 medium egg
- 50g butter, softened, plus extra to grease
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- splash milk
- For the chocolate sauce
- 25g Cambozola
- 25g dark chocolate, chopped
- 60ml double cream
Heat the oven to 180ºC / fan 160ºC / gas 4. Grease 2 ramekins with butter.
Beat together the flour, cocoa, sugar, egg, butter, and vanilla. Mix in a splash of milk if the mixture seems a bit thick. It should be a dropping consistency. Divide equally between the ramekins.
Cut the bottoms off the pears so that they will sit flat, then push into the centre of each of the ramekins.
Bake for 20-25 minutes until the pudding has risen and is cooked through.
To make the Cambozola chocolate sauce, chop the Cambozola into small pieces and place it into a small pan with the chocolate and cream. Slowly melt over a low heat, whisking until combined. Remove from the heat and pour into a jug to serve.
Serve pudding either in the ramekins or pop them out of the ramekins and serve on a plate.