Monday, 30th October 2017

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A four-course meal to keep your heart healthy yet happy

A four-course meal with the help of 4 Calcutta chefs

  • Published 13.02.20, 12:25 AM
  • Updated 13.02.20, 12:25 AM
  • 4 mins read


by Pritika Sen Suraiya of Caramelle

Before you start with your meal, tuck in this fresh, light and healthy canape with a glass of white wine, and let the conversations flow. While the balsamic glaze adds a punch, fruits bring in some sweetness, which is balanced by the sour cream. Red from the pomegranate adds to the spirit of love!

“Well, it’s not heavy on the stomach and builds an appetite for further courses. It’s perfect for people who want to eat well, yet not feel heavy after,” said Pritika whose favourite V-Day food is cake! “I love eating, creating and cutting cakes!” added the food entrepreneur.


  • Multigrain/ wholewheat bread or baguette
  • Rocket leaves
  • Peaches
  • Pomegranate
  • Walnuts (chopped)
  • Cream cheese
  • Balsamic glaze (recipe below)
  • Feta /parmesan cheese (optional)
  • Black pepper and salt


  • Grill the peaches in an oven or griller and set aside to cool.
  • Slice and toast the bread. Cool first, then use a knife to lightly spread on some cream cheese. Layer with some fresh rocket leaves.
  • Now arrange the grilled peaches. Sprinkle the chopped walnut and pomegranate on top.
  • Subtly drizzle over some balsamic glaze using a teaspoon. Season with salt and crushed pepper.
  • Top with some crumbled feta or parmesan, if you please. And now you now have a completely hearty but healthy canape!
  • Method for the balsamic glaze:
  • l Combine ½cup balsamic vinegar with 1tbsp honey in a pan and bring to heat.
  • l Let it simmer for eight to 10 minutes until it has reduced in quantity and is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

Poached Salmon with Kalamata Olives and Strawberry Pepper Coulis by sambit banick of Spice Kraft & The saffron tree

Inspired from the classic strawberry and cream, this appetiser is an amalgamation of both sweet and savoury, thanks to the use of salmon and strawberries. The tender and umami salmon pairs well with the sweet and fruity notes of strawberry, while pepper brings in some smokey-spicy notes. “I thought of this particular dish as it’s the closest, yet a healthier option, of strawberry and cream. I wanted to blend in savoury and sweet, punctuated by the hot peppers,” said Sambit who was once starry-eyed about a girl in school but didn’t turn up for a date on Valentine’s Day knowing she was a DGP’s daughter! “I didn’t want to end my life,” laughed Sambit.

Ingredients for Poached Salmon:

  • Sliced salmon, 200g
  • White wine, 60ml
  • Black pepper, 1tbsp
  • Salt, 1tsp
  • Fresh dill, 2 sprigs
  • Garlic, 3 cloves
  • Lemon, 1
  • Water, 100ml

Ingredients for Strawberry Pepper Coulis:

  • Strawberry, 200g
  • Orange juice, 40ml
  • Sugar, 100g
  • Water, 100ml
  • Black pepper, 2tbsp

Method for Poaching the Salmon:

  • Take the salmon and season well with salt and pepper.
  • Now bring the white wine, garlic cloves, lemon juice and water to boil over medium heat, in a shallow pan.
  • Add the salmon and fresh dill and cook for eight minutes. Gently remove from stock and set aside to cool.

Method for Strawberry Pepper Coulis:

  • Slowly bring orange juice, water, sugar and black pepper to a boil, stirring continuously to dissolve the sugar completely without caramelising it.
  • Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  • Once cooled, add the warm syrup and fresh strawberries to a blender and blend until smooth.
  • Now pass this puree through a fine mesh strainer and collect the thick mixture in a bowl. Your Strawberry Pepper Coulis is ready.


  • Take the poached salmon slices and wrap around fresh Kalamata olives.
  • Drizzle some strawberry coulis on them and serve on the side with fresh, cut strawberries.

Grilled Bhetki with Keralan vanilla, Almonds & Fresh chilli by Urvika kanoi of The Daily 

With subtle notes of vanilla and a tang of citrus, this main-course dish was what the 28-year-old chef-owner created for us. “I feel that the ingredients have a certain romance and are indulgent in their own way. It’s definitely a special dish to whip up for your loved one,” said Urvika who thinks there’s something romantic about authentic Italian food, for example, a good Spaghetti Bolognese and Tiramisu. 

Ingredients For the fish:

  • Bekti, 2 single portion filets
  • Minced garlic, 1tsp
  • Chopped parsley, 1tbsp
  • Juice & zest of lime, ½
  • Salt, to taste
  • Olive oil, to cook

Ingredients for the sauce:

  • Vanilla pod, ¼
  • Fish stock, 75ml
  • White wine, 20ml
  • Coriander stem, 1-2
  • Fresh red chilli, 1 left whole and deseeded
  • Cream , 75ml
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Ingredients for plating:

  • Toasted almond flakes, 2-3tbsp
  • Fresh red chilli, 1 thin slice
  • Coriander, few sprigs
  • Lime wedges

Extra toasted breadcrumbs (optional)


  • Marinate the fish with all the ingredients.
  • For the sauce, get the stock and wine in a pan and bring it to a rapid boil. Let it boil till it reduces to half.
  • Add all the other ingredients apart from the salt. Taste and season. Let it sit.
  • Get a grill pan on the heat. Add oil and the fish, sear on both the sides and cover with a lid to finish cooking. It hardly takes a few minutes.
  • Strain the sauce and put the fish on a plate and spoon the sauce on top. Add the almonds, chilli, coriander and lime.
  • For an added crunch, add a spoonful of the crumbs on the top.

The healthy berry by Sneha Singhi of Paris Cafe

With a crunchy base and gooey centre, this sinful yet simple and healthier version of a dessert, uses fresh strawberries to balance the sweetness out. “I love the combination of strawberries and dark chocolate. Also, strawberry is an aphrodisiac so it’s perfect for Valentine’s Day,” said Sneha who “loves” watching cheesy romantic films, and rom-coms like Notting Hill and The Ugly Truth.

Pictures: Rashbehari Das

Ingredients for the short crust pastry:

  • Whole wheat flour, 1¼ cup
  • Butter (chilled), 60g
  • Cane sugar, 2tbsp
  • Cold water (as required)

Ingredients for the filling:

  • Dark chocolate, 125g
  • Instant/porridge oats, 3tbsp
  • Milk, 1 cup


  • In a large bowl, sift the flour and salt, and add the butter and sugar.
  • Rub the butter and flour to breadcrumb texture using your fingers. Knead the dough lightly using little water.
  • Cover the dough using a cling film and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  • Roll out the dough into ¼ inch thickness, working with one piece of dough at a time. Use a 3-inch cookie cutter and cut out 12 rounds.
  • Transfer the round sheet on to each mini tart moulds.
  • Using your fingers, press the pastry to fit into the tart moulds.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C. Bake the mini tarts for 20 minutes and allow them to cool before filling them.
  • Cook the oats in milk for three to five minutes and pour them over dark chocolate chunks to make a ganache filling.
  • Fill the tart moulds with chocolate filling and chill it in the refrigerator.
  • Add whole strawberries on top.