Of course it’s a money-grabbing opportunity for salesmen of things pink and heart-shaped; obviously you should express your feelings to the loved one always, not only once a year; it undeniably discriminates non-straight relationships with the windswept boy and girl kissing imagery. Sure enough, the restaurants are going to make a minimal effort for the maximum price on the day.
But hey, there are ways of making it just a really lovely date night. Ignore the overpriced places in town – stay in and cook. Cook something you both like, cook something special and above all – cook together.
It really needn’t be oysters followed by beef wellington. Beef stuffed with porcini mushrooms is twice as nice and three times as easy, or simply make two perfect fillet steaks. You can have the beef with parsnip fries or the really special baked and fried crunchy chips. Bacon and blue cheese lettuce wedges on the side will make it a classic.
If you think steaks are daunting, try the five spice duck; this is really easy to do well and not any less sophisticated than beef fillet. You’ll enjoy it with plain rice and a smashed cucumber salad.
Camembert en croûte will suit vegetarians and for more ideas see the Valentine Collection, with the heart-shaped cake and rose and raspberry biscuits.
For the rest of the week and for everyone who spurns the occasion, there are nachos with chilli beef; there is buttermilk pork and there is pasta with veggie mushroom ragù. But you know, if you fancied making a few vanilla chocolate cupcakes, just because you fancy them and not for a special occasion, there would be nothing wrong with it at all.
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