ENJOY restaurant-quality food without sky-high Valentine’s prices – and lovey-dovey fellow diners – thanks to the great-value meal deals available at this time of year.
Here are some suggested menus, perfect for wooing the one you love. But hurry – some end today.
Best for: Steak lovers
ICELAND has a great deal on steak, chips and strawberries for £5.50, saving £3 on the usual price. You can get your hands on the offer until Sunday.
Main course: Iceland luxury gaucho sirloin steak (227g), down to £2.50 from £4. With Iceland steak-cut chips, 1.25kg, £1.
Dessert: Strawberries, 400g, £2.
Best for: Keeping it simple
THE Co-op’s deal includes a main meal for two, and two side dishes (or one side and dessert) for £8, saving £3.80 on buying these individually. The offer is on until February 20. My pick of the options available is:
Main course: Irresistible chicken in white wine sauce, with side of Irresistible dauphinoise potatoes.
Dessert: Irresistible chocolate melt-in-the-middle puddings.
Best for: Classics well done
WAITROSE has a £20 deal for a starter, main course, two side dishes, dessert and wine, fizz or chocolates. There’s a big selection and if you pick the items below you’ll be saving £13.17 compared with their usual price. Be quick though – the offer ends today.
To start: Vegetarian mushroom arancini.
Main course: Two ribeye steaks and bearnaise butter with sweet potato chips and Waitrose cauliflower cheese.
Dessert: Waitrose 1 two raspberry panna cottas.
To drink: Les Dauphins cotes du Rhone villages.
Best for: Value
MORRISONS The Best Dine-In Deal for Valentine’s includes a starter, main, a side to share, a dessert and a bottle of wine, soft drink or chocolates, all for £15. The selection below – one of a huge range of choices for meat eaters, vegetarians and vegans – saves £12 on buying the items individually. Offer runs until Sunday.
To start: Tear and share bread and French camembert.
Main course: Beef Wellington with side of The Best green vegetable medley.
Dessert: The Best Belgian chocolate and salted caramel sharing heart.
To drink: The Best prosecco spumante.
Best for: Individual choice
CHOOSE individual main dishes with Tesco’s meal deal including any starter, two mains, side, dessert, a half bottle of Champagne, full bottle of Prosecco, wine, or a box of chocolates, for £20. The deal can save customers up to £13.70. The offer ends today.
To start: Finest tomato and mozzarella tartlets.
Main course: Finest lobster mac and cheese with Finest caramelised onion and cheddar rosti hearts.
Dessert: Finest chocolate brownie heart.
To drink: Finest Premier Cru non-vintage Champagne, 37.5cl.
Best for: Surf and turf
SAINSBURY’S £18.25 bundle for Valentine’s has delicious choices for meat and fish lovers. Hurry though, the deals ends today.
To start: Sainsbury’s sweet chilli prawns, were £2.75, now £2.50.
Main course: Sainsbury’s two rump steaks with heart-shaped pink peppercorn butter, £6. With side of crispy triple-cooked chips in beef dripping, 400g, down to £2 from £2.60.
Dessert: Gü zillionaires’ salted caramel cheesecake desserts, down to £1.50 from £3.
To drink: Edizione 789 Di Mondelli Prosecco, £6.25.
Best for: Variety
ASDA’S Extra Special Valentine’s Day meal deal is £15 and includes a starter, a main, two side dishes, a dessert and a drink. Vegan options too. The deal ends today.
To start: Extra Special Cornish Camembert with a sloe gin & cranberry dip.
Main course: Chorizo-wrapped chicken in Chianti sauce. With roast root vegetables with shallot & dijon butter and fondant potatoes. All from the Extra Special range.
Dessert: Extra Special red velvet melting puddings.
To drink: Extra Special rosé cava.
Best for: Choice & chocs
MARKS & Spencer has a £20 deal, giving romantics the choice of 35 dishes, which means more than 200 different menu combinations. Diners can tuck in to a delicious starter, main, side, dessert, box of chocolates and bottle of fizz for two people – with a maximum saving of £19.30. The offer runs until Saturday.
To start: Coquille St Jacques.
Main course: Gastropub lamb shanks with dauphinoise potatoes.
Dessert: Vibrant macaroons.
To drink: Conte Priuli prosecco.
Plus: Milk and dark chocolate hearts.
Creamy wild mushrooms & walnut pasta
- 50g mixed dried mushrooms
- 200g tagliatelle; 60g walnuts, roughly chopped; ½ tbsp olive oil; 3 shallots, peeled and finely chopped; 1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed; 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves; 10g butter; 1 tsp wholegrain mustard; 2 tbsp Marsala wine; 150ml single cream; ½ lemon, juice and zest only.
METHOD: Place the dried mushrooms in a large bowl and pour over 400ml boiling water. Set aside to soak. Cook the pasta in boiling water according to the packet instructions.
Over a medium to high heat, toast the walnuts in a large saucepan for two minutes until crisp and golden. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Return the pan to the heat, add the oil and sauté the shallots for three minutes.
Drain the mushrooms, reserving some of the water, and squeeze out any excess water.
Add the garlic and thyme to the shallots and cook for a further minute. Then reduce to a low-medium heat and stir through the butter and mushrooms. Cook for five minutes until warmed through.
Stir the mustard and Marsala into the mushrooms and cook for about 15 seconds, then pour over the cream and lemon juice and cook for one minute.
Drain the pasta and toss it through the mushrooms with half the toasted walnuts and a little of the mushroom water to loosen the sauce. Transfer to plates and scatter with the remaining walnuts and lemon zest to serve.
MOST READ IN MONEY
Chocolate Eton mess
YOU NEED: 5 mini meringue nests; 200ml low-fat crème fraîche; 200g fresh strawberries; 4 tbsp chocolate sauce.
TO MAKE: Crush the mini meringue nests in a mixing bowl and stir in the crème fraîche.
Hull and halve most of the strawberries and toss the halves into the meringue mixture before carefully spooning into a dish big enough for two to share.
Then decorate with the whole strawberries.
Keep chilled until you’re ready for your dessert and then drizzle over the chocolate sauce just before serving.