Valentine's Day special: Passion food
Spice up this Valentine's Day with these exotic and easyto-make recipes.
A feast from the land of Kama Sutra would be irresistible even for the most discerning ones on Valentine's Day. As the day approaches, internationally-renowned chef Vikas Khanna gives us recipes of a few aphrodisiac foods, to tickle our senses. Says Khanna, "The ingredients of passion vary from one culture to another. In the world of food, there are many ingredients that promote passion through aroma, scents, flavours and textures. I would suggest people to celebrate the tradition of sensuous eating." What's more, the recipes are easy to make. So, get ready to serve a few dishes that stir passion this February 14th.
Avocado soup with spicy salsa
INGREDIENTS (SERVES 4)
1 vine-ripened red tomato, 1 large red onion, finely chopped, 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro, 1 fresh Serrano or jalapeno chilli, seeded and chopped, Juice of 2 limes, 4 ripe Haas avocados, peeled, pitted and cut into chunks, 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, 3 cloves garlic, chopped, 1 quart vegetable stock; more, if required, Salt to taste
Quarter and seed the tomato. Dice and transfer it to a bowl. Stir in half of the chopped onions, cilantro, Serrano chilli, salt, and half the lime juice. Cover the bowl and put it into the refrigerator. In a large nonreactive mixing bowl, toss the avocados with the remaining lime juice until evenly coated. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium to high heat and add the remaining onions and garlic, and saute. Stir continuously for about 5 minutes until the onions are translucent. Add salt, avocados and stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat and puree in a blender, adding more stock if the mixture is too thick. Refrigerate and serve chilled, topped with tomato salsa.
Persimmon and pistachios with dried chillies
INGREDIENTS (SERVES 2)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil I 4 whole dried red chillies I 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root I ½ cup pistachios, shelled I ½ cup sugar I 2 tablespoons lemon juice I 1 teaspoon ground coriander seeds I 4 soft Fuyu persimmons, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes I Salt to taste
In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and fry the chillies for a minute. Add the ginger, pistachios, sugar, lemon juice, ground coriander seeds, salt, persimmons, and ½ cup water. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to simmer for 5 minutes. Cook until the persimmons are tender and the water has evaporated. Remove from heat and let cool completely. Cover and refrigerate for up to a week.
Mint-chilli hot chocolate milk
INGREDIENTS (SERVES 4)
4 cups milk, 3 sprigs fresh mint, 1 (1-inch) piece cinnamon stick, 280 gm semisweet or milk chocolate, cut into small pieces, 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
Combine milk, mint sprigs and cinnamon in a saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium to high heat. Remove from heat, and let stand for 5 to 10 minutes, covered.Strain to remove cinnamon and mint sprigs. Return milk to saucepan and place over medium heat. Add chocolate and whisk until chocolate is completely melted and milk is frothy. Serve immediately sprinkled with chilli flakes.
Chocolate roulade with mixed berry compote
INGREDIENTS FOR CHOCOLATE ROULADE (SERVES 10)
280 gm bittersweet chocolate, 56 gm unsalted butter, at room temperature, 6 egg yolks and 6 egg whites, 56 gm sugar, 2 teaspoons dried ancho chilli powder, ¼ cup sugar, 2 cups whipping cream, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, Good quality cocoa powder for dusting
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Melt the chocolate and butter and allow it to cool slightly. Whisk the yolks, slowly adding the sugar and beat to ribbon stage. Sprinkle in the chilli powder. Fold yolk mixture into the cooled chocolate and set aside. Whip the whites and sugar together until soft peaks form. Fold the whites into the chocolate-yolk mixture. Spread the mixture into a sheet pan evenly and bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the roulade from the oven and cover with a damp cloth. While the roulade is cooling, whip cream with cinnamon and sugar until soft peaks form. Unmould the roulade and spread the cream evenly onto the cake, and roll to form a log. Finish by sprinkling with the cocoa powder. Serve cold.
INGREDIENTS FOR MIXED BERRY COMPOTE
1 cup assorted fresh berries (such as raspberries, blueberries, blackberries), 3 tablespoons sugar, 4 tablespoons sweet white wine such as Moscato (optional)
Combine all the ingredients. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving. Read more here:long formal dresses