For all the couples who prefer a cozy night to make reservations out for Valentine’s Day, we recommend these special date night dinners. with these delicious Valentine’s Day dinner ideas, you’ll be able to create an easy and romantic meal right at home.
For those couples who prefer to dine out this Valentine’s day, the Woodford Dolmen Hotel is the perfect destination to make the most out of this special day. Our head chef has designed a special Valentine’s day 3 Course menu for only €32.50 per person
1. Pan Seared Scallops with Black Pudding and Dressed Rocket Leaves
• 8 hand-dived large scallops (roe removed, cleaned)
• 8 slices of black pudding (sliced into 1cm discs)
• 150 g fresh rocket leaves
• 2 tsp red wine vinegar
• 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
• 2 tblsp (or 3) tbspn olive oil
• salt and pepper,
For the Black Pudding: In a small frying pan, fry off the black pudding until it is crisp on either side. Set aside and keep warm.
For the Scallops: Season the scallops on both sides with salt and pepper.
In a frying pan heat a tablespoon of the oil. Lay the scallops on the pan to fry for 50 seconds on each side and lightly golden. Set aside and keep warm.
For the Dressing: Deglaze the pan used for the scallops with the red wine vinegar and mustard and olive oil and warm through for a minute or two before seasoning with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Place the rocket in a bowl before tossing together with the rocket until lightly dressed.
2. Lobster Pasta
• 1 x 400g frozen cooked lobster, defrosted and drained on kitchen paper
• 150g linguine
For the white sauce
• 50g butter
• 2 garlic cloves, chopped
• finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
• ½ tsp chilli flakes
• 5 tbsp fresh chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus extra to serve (optional)
•6 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese
• Parmesan shavings, to serve
Take the defrosted lobster and prepare according to pack instructions: remove the claws by twisting claw and knuckles apart, taking care as the shells may be sharp. Insert a knife into the back of the head and cut down to the tail to halve.
Remove and dispose of the pale sac, the gills in the head area and the dark intestinal thread that runs the length of the tail.
Extract the meat with a fork or skewer. Break the claws and legs in their natural sections and crack the shell by tapping with a nutcracker or knife. Extract the meat with a fork or skewer.
Put all the meat in a bowl and season well. Dispose of all the unwanted shell.
Bring a pan of lightly salted water to a boil and cook the linguine for 10 minutes until tender. Drain.
Heat the butter in a frying pan and add the garlic. Cook for 1 minute, then add the lemon zest and juice, chili flakes, parsley, and lobster meat. Toss over the heat for 1 minute until the lobster is piping hot.
Add the drained linguini and parmesan and toss well using tongs to cover the pasta in the buttery lobster sauce and parmesan. Season again with freshly ground black pepper, then transfer to two serving bowls and top with extra shavings of parmesan and chopped parsley, if you like.
3. Chicken Caesar Salad
• 5 tbsp Caesar Dressing
• 75 g Croutons
• 2 Fresh Chicken Fillets chopped
• 1 SuperValu Iceberg Lettuce
• 60 g Parmesan Cheese Shavings (optional)
• 150 g Smoked Bacon LardonsMethod:
In a frying pan, fry the bacon lardons for 4-5 mins. Removing from pan onto kitchen paper, then add the chicken to the same pan.
Fry until the chicken is cooked through (check by cutting a piece in half and ensuring it is white & opaque all the way through). Place this to one side and allow it to cool.
In a separate pan, heat olive oil and fry off the bacon lardons until they start to crisp and brown around the edges. Place this to one side to allow it to cool.
Separate the lettuce leaves into a large bowl and add a generous 5-6 tablespoons of Caesar dressing. Grate in the parmesan and combine until all the cos leaves are evenly covered in a dressing,
Add in the chicken pieces and bacon lardons and stir to combine. Place in a serving bowl and top with croutons and additional parmesan shavings if desired.
4. Chocolate-dipped strawberries
• Chocolate of choice
Cut a strip of baking parchment and leave to one side. To melt the chocolate, fill a small pan with 2cm water and bring to a simmer. Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and rest it on top of the pan, ensuring the bowl isn’t touching the water. Stir the chocolate to gradually melt it.
Gently hold the strawberries by the leafy top and dip into the chocolate. Tap off any excess chocolate and put it on the parchment to set. If you have any leftover chocolate, pour it onto another strip of parchment and leave it to set, it can be used again.
Enjoy your romantic date, lovebirds!
Author Bio: Katie McGarr is a resident writer for Woodford Dolmen Hotel Carlow, a charming hotel in Carlow set in the beautiful banks of River Barrow, renowned for its wedding-perfect location. When she’s not taking vibrant street photos, you can find her writing articles about travel, food, and lifestyle.