When you cook for Valentine's Day, love radiates from your heart, seeps into the food and gives it the mystical quality that ignites the soul. When you serve your Valentine an elegant meal do it with some candles, good wine or champagne if you like, and a loving smile. The real aphrodisiac is you! Cream of Courgette soup with tarragon Ingredients: 500 g small courgettes (zucchini) firm and a shiny green 1 chicken bouillon cube 1 large tablespoon creme fraiche 1/2 teaspoon of crushed peppercorns 2 sprigs of tarragon washed and drained salt to taste Wash trim and slice the courgettes. Fill a pan with 1 1/2 cups water, add the bouillon cube and bring to the boil.
Add the sliced courgette. Cook for 15 minutes. Transfer to a blender, add the creme fraiche, peppercorns and salt and then blend. Pour into soup bowls and add the sprigs of tarragon as a garnish.
Tagliatelle with sage and pasta Ingredients: 1/2 bunch fresh sage washed and drained 4 slices pancetta ham 200 grams fresh tagliatelle pasta 3 tablespoons olive oil 2 tablespoons ricotta cheese 2 tablespoons butter 60 grams of grated parmesan cheese Saute the slices of pancetta and drain on paper towel. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a frying pan and add the sage leaves and saute for 1 minute. Drain. Cook the pasta according to the directions with 1 tablespoon of oil added to the water to keep the strands of pasta separate during cooking.
Drain and add the ricotta and butter. Stir together. Heap the pasta on two plates and top each pile with the pancetta, sage leaves, grated Parmesan, salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Chocolate Heart with Raspberries Ingredients: 3 eggs 100 grams bitter chocolate 100 grams unsalted butter 100 grams of granulated sugar 1 teaspoon raspberry liqueur 1 tablespoon plain flour 150 grams fresh raspberries Icing sugar to decorate Preheat oven to 300F or 150C Separate the egg yolks from the whites. Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler. Remove from the heat and whisk in the egg yolks, butter, sugar, raspberry liqueur, and flour. Whisk the egg whites until stiff and then fold into the chocolate mixture.
Butter a heart-shaped or round cake tin. Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 40 minutes. The cake should be slightly runny in the centre. If using a round cake tin then cut a piece of cardboard into a heart-shaped pattern approximately the same size as the cake.
Remove the cake from the tin and place the heart shaped template on top and use a sharp knife to cut out a heart. Cool. Wash and drain the raspberries.
Just before serving, arrange the raspberries evenly over the top of the cake. Sprinkle with icing sugar (use a tea strainer) and serve immediately.
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