Happy Valentine’s Day from Bel-Air Gites
A lot of people feel that Valentine’s Day has become too commercialised. But here at Bel-Air gites, we still think that it is a special day worth celebrating. And it doesn’t take much effort to show that special person in your life how much you love them.
Sadly a romantic meal out might not be possible this February. However, a lovingly prepared home-cooked meal will show them just how much you care. I’ve listed a few recipes below that are quick and easy, and ultimately, will help to inspire you.
Not everyone is a fan of shellfish, so I’m going to avoid the obvious fishy ‘food of love’ oysters. Also, unless you live near the French Atlantic coast where we have the world’s best oysters, then you may struggle to find good quality ones. If you are going to make it a special meal, then try to get the best produce you can afford.
- Tomato and basil pesto bruschetta or smashed avocado and ricotta bruschetta. Both of these recipes have a few, easy-to-find ingredients, and only take 15 minutes to make.
- Chicken Cordon Blue soup – even the name sounds fancy. But it’s actually really easy to make. This recipe makes enough for 4 so half the quantities for your Valentine’s Day meal for two.
- Chicken Satay skewers – this will impress your partner, so long as they don’t have a peanut allergy! Longer to prep and cook though, but we think the effort is worth it.
- Baked Camembert with garlic bread – simplicity itself, and Camembert even provides it’s own baking container, to save on the washing up.
We found we liked a lot of the budget recipes that were on a supermarket website, and you can ‘dress them up’ by adding your favourite side dishes.
- Sausage whirls with apples and mash – easy to make, and the apples add a great twist to the dish. Use a good Cumberland sausage, or a plain old banger, whatever you prefer.
- Tuna pasta bake – delicious topped with grated cheese and served with garlic bread
- Easy chicken curry – no need to slave over a hot stove for hours with this curry recipe. Recipe to serve in 40 minutes
- Steak and polenta chips – if polenta is not to your liking then it’s easy to substitute your usual fries, or perhaps some crispy little roasties instead.
In France the cheese course is always served before the dessert, unlike in the UK. We have hundreds of French cheeses to choose from, and have a number of favourites. But if you are going to put together a date-night cheeseboard for two, then select three or four different cheeses. Or if your skipping dessert, then add a couple more, and a nice glass of port.
There are just far too many delicious desserts out there, but as it’s Valentine’s Day, why not have a sharing one? For us, it would be a large bowl of fondant au chocolat, vanilla ice cream and lashings of gooey chocolate sauce. Oh, and two spoons – so you can share, remember?
Food-wise, there are so many wonderful Charentais specialities our guests always tell us they are spoilt for choice. Oysters, éclade (smoked mussels with pine needles), chaudrée (fish soup), or galette charentaise. Dining out in the region is an incredible experience, and we can give you lots of great recommendations. But if you are not sure about what to do or how to order in French, we are always happy to help.
Peace of mind
When you are ready to book your summer holiday, why not check out our new ‘Exclusive Use‘ package? It’s proving very popular with French families wanting to spend some quality time together.
For just €2600 per week you can stay in our two family gites, Chataigniers and Chouette , with full unlimited access to all our fantastic family facilities. This will give you total peace of mind, and a wonderful time shared with your loved ones. Our special package is only available by booking direct with Bel-Air Gites. Availability is limited due to already confirmed bookings, so call us now to check availability and get a great deal.