If you’re up for celebrating Valentine’s Day at home with a beautiful meal, we might just be able to help. We’ve put together a delicious vegan menu which we reckon is just about perfect for a special evening in. Not into V-Day? No worries, these are still really nice dishes to prepare - either all together, or separately if you’re not up for the full 3 courses. Healthy, tasty and simple - time to get stuck in.
Starter: Roasted spiced cauliflower in pitta
They say flowers are the ultimate romantic gesture - so why not try cauliflower this 14 February? We loved the look of this recipe on BBC Good Food which includes plenty of flavours from sweet pomegranate to ras el hanout to create a super-tasty starter.
- Mix crushed garlic, cinnamon, paprika, ras el hanout, a little olive oil with yoghurt.
- Cut your cauliflower into florets and dip them in your mix.
- Next, put the cauliflower in an oven-proof dish with some water covering the bottom and cook on a low to medium heat for around 35-45 minutes with foil over. Take the foil off and cook for around 10 minutes more.
- Meanwhile, heat some chickpeas until piping hot (be sure to season) and mash them.
- Make a tahini sauce using tahini paste and lemon juice mixed.
- Pop some pittas into the oven until warm and a little toasted.
- Serve the florets in the pitta, topped with the crushed chickpeas and a drizzle of tahini sauce.
- Sprinkle pomegranates over the top for a little sweet zing.
Note: For a lighter option (for example, if it’s being served as a starter) present the florets on salad instead and skip the pittas.
Main: Vegan bolognese
We love a pasta dish any day of the week, and there are plenty to choose from around the web. But we especially liked this vegan twist on the classic bolognese from BBC Good Food, which we’ve used to inspire our recipe. Note too - you can add anything you like (red peppers, red lentils) or swap out anything you’re not so keen on to suit your taste buds.
- Get some onions and garlic frying in a little oil, before adding sliced mushrooms, a can of chopped tomatoes and your favourite herbs (oregano, thyme and rosemary are good bets). For some kick, pop in a dollop of Marmite or soy sauce, and let your ragu simmer for around 40 minutes.
- Get your vegan spaghetti (or linguine, if you’re looking for a quicker cook) boiling once your ragu has been going for about 30 minutes. Keep an eye on it as you want it to be al dente, not overcooked.
- Serve garnished with a little basil and extra drizzle of olive oil plus a dash of grated vegan cheese if you fancy.
Dessert: Chocolate nut crispy slices
We shared these beauties from personal trainer, self-confessed foodie and friend of Thought @libbyhorsley_ on our blog a while back, but they looked so good, we figured we’d do it again. These are great tasty treats, perfect for sharing. Make a batch and make them last (probably not that long, though.)
See the full recipe for chocolate crispy nut slices.