Gino D'Acampo's caramelised cod with goats cheese salad
The Italian stallion is back in the kitchen with the ultimate Valentine's day menu. Gino's caramelised cod with a warm goat's cheese salad is sure to impress your loved ones. And to finish the evening off just right, he’s got the ultimate lovers cocktail - his chocolate and hazelnut martini. And he’ll be treating our newly engaged couple to some too!
Grilled caramelised cod with honey, garlic + balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp runny honey or maple syrup
5 tbsp balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 tbsp finely chopped flat leaf parsley leaves
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
1 tsp smoked paprika
4 x 200g skinless cod fillets
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Pour the honey and balsamic vinegar into a medium-sized glass bowl. Use a hand-held whisk to mix. Gradually add the extra virgin olive oil, stirring continuously with the whisk. Stir in the parsley, garlic, paprika, ¼ tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper.
2. Gently place the cod fillets in the marinade. Cover and leave to marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes, turning the cod fillets over halfway through.
3. Preheat the grill to its highest setting.
4. Place a sheet of foil on a medium-sized baking sheet, then lay a sheet of baking parchment on top of the foil.
5. Gently move the fish around in the marinade, then, using tongs, carefully place the cod fillets, skinned side down, on the baking parchment. Discard the remaining marinade.
6. Season each fillet with a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper and grill for 10 minutes. Remove from the grill and, using a flexible spatula, gently transfer a cod fillet to each of the 4 warmed plates. Serve immediately.
Green bean + goat’s cheese salad with mint
Serves 4 as a side, or 2 as a light lunch
300g fine green beans, trimmed each end
25g fresh white bread, weighed without crusts
3 tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, peeled, quartered lengthways and finely sliced
8 mint leaves, finely sliced
Juice of ½ lemon
100g hard goat’s cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Pour 1 litre water into a medium-sized saucepan, add ½ tbsp salt and bring to the boil over a medium heat. Tip in the beans and boil for 5 minutes. Drain and plunge into cold water to ensure they stop cooking and keep their bright green colour.
2. Place the bread in a food processor and blitz to create breadcrumbs.
3. Meanwhile, pour the oil into a medium-sized frying pan, place over a high heat and when the oil is hot (about 30 seconds), add the shallots. Fry for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.
4. Drain the beans and add to the frying pan. Season with ½ tsp salt and 5 twists of black pepper, mix well and stir-fry for 2 minutes.
5. Reduce the heat to medium and stir in the breadcrumbs, mint and lemon juice. Fry for a further minute.
6. Spoon the beans on to a large serving platter or 4 individual small plates.
7. Crumble over the goat’s cheese and serve immediately with some warm crusty bread.
Chocolate hazelnut martini
300ml single cream
3 tbsp chocolate-hazelnut spread (such as Nutella), about 90g
About 10 ice cubes
4 tbsp vodka
4 tbsp Cointreau
1. Pour the cream into a small saucepan and place it over a low heat. Stir in the chocolate-hazelnut spread and stir with a whisk all together, making sure that the cream does not reach boiling point. Set aside for 20 minutes, allowing the chocolate cream to cool down, stirring occasionally.
2. Place the ice in a cocktail shaker to come three-quarters of the way up and pour over the vodka and Cointreau. Pour the cooled chocolate-cream mix into the shaker, close with the lid and shake for 15 seconds.
3. Strain the drink into 2 martini glasses, leaving the ice behind, and serve immediately. Heaven in a glass!