Valentine's Day: Special recipes for your loved ones

This Valentine's Day, treat your special someone to these easy-to-make aesthetically pleasing dishes

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Photos: Supplied
Photos: Supplied

Published: Mon 14 Feb 2022, 1:45 PM

Last updated: Mon 14 Feb 2022, 1:47 PM



For the cookies

Cold Butter - 75gms

Sugar - 50gms

Almond Flour / Ground Almonds - 20gms

All Purpose / Whole wheat flour - 150gms


Some Orange Zest

Lime juice

Milk - 1 to 2 tbsp

Vanilla essence - 1/2 tsp

For the strawberry jam

Strawberry - 100gms

Sugar - 3 tbsp


To begin with, blend together butter, sugar and flours to a sandy, grainy texture. To this, add the orange zest and vanilla essence. Now, add in 1-2 tbsp of milk just to bind the dough.

Blitz the mixture for 1-2 pulses and transfer to a mixing bowl. Combine the dough and once it comes together, place it on a parchment paper, flatten it and place another paper on top. Roll the dough to a thickness of 0.5mm or 1/2 cm. Be very gentle through the process and ensure that the thickness is even.

Now, place it onto a tray and refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, for the strawberry jam, wash and chop the strawberries. Blend them coarsely.

Add in the sugar to this and microwave for 2-3 minutes in bursts of 1 minute. (You can also cook this on the gas on a low flame.) The colour of the jam will change and it will get deeper. Add in the lime juice at this stage and mix it. Set aside and allow to cool to room temperature. Meanwhile, remove the dough and make the cookies using the cookie cutters. I have used round ones for the base and heart shaped ones for the window. Transfer the cookies onto a tray, lined with parchment paper and bake for 15-18 minutes at 180 degrees C in a preheated oven.

Once the edges start to brown, remove and cool on a wire rack. Once cooled, sprinkle some powdered sugar on top. Finally, spread some strawberry jam onto the round ones and sandwich them with the heart cut out ones. Serve immediately.

Some Pointers:

Whenever zesting citrus peels, make sure to just grate thrice at one spot. Grating more will add the bitter white peel too.

While making a cookie dough, be gentle and just combine the ingredients well. Over-kneading will develop gluten which causes the cookies to become tough.

While baking cookies or biscuits, always line your tray with parchment paper (Not butter paper). It controls the baking temperature and also gives a perfect golden brown colour to your baked goods.

While making cookies, freezing the cookie dough for 30 minutes prior to baking limits their spread by solidifying the fat. It also improves the texture of your final product.

Always add lime or lemon juice towards the end, once you finish cooking. This prevents the loss of Vitamin C in limes and lemons and prevents it from getting bitter.



Dry Mix (mix and sieve them all together)

All Purpose Flour- 1/4 cup

Castor sugar - 1/4 cup

Milk Powder - 2 tbsp

A pinch of Salt

Baking powder - 1/8 tsp

Cocoa powder - 2.5 tbsp

Wet Chocolate Mixture

Dark chocolate - 65gm

Butter - 2 tbsp

Hot water - 1/4 cup

To garnish and serve

Some icing sugar

A scoop of icecream


Mix the dry ingredients and sieve them. Set aside. Next, melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave or on a double boiler.

Brush the ramekin with butter and dust it with cocoa powder. Mix the hot water, dry ingredients and chocolate butter mix to make a silky smooth batter. The batter should be of a dropping consistency and not very liquid.

Pour the prepared batter upto 3/4th of the height of the ramekin.

To bake in a cooker, add 1 cup salt to the cooker, place a ring mould and a plate on top of it. Heat the cooker on medium flame for 10 minutes.

Place the cake in the cooker and cook on medium flame for 12 to 13 minutes. Remove, invert onto a plate, dust some icing sugar on top, serve immediately with icecream and enjoy!



Bread slices

Strawberry Jam

For the batter

1 tsp whole wheat flour + 1/2 cup water

Mix them together and set aside


Butter, to cook the rolls

Nutella, to drizzle on top


Remove the sides of the bread slices and roll it thinly using a rolling pin.

Now, spread some strawberry jam generously onto the slices and roll them up.

Dip them into the prepared batter and cook them on a non stick tawa using some butter till they are nice and golden brown from all sides. Remove, serve immediately with a drizzle of Nutella and enjoy!

Recipes courtesy Dubai food blogger Neha Deepak Shah, a finalist at MasterChef India S4

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