How To Create The Perfect Valentines Meal

Planning on cooking in your kitchen this Valentine's Day? Learn how to create the perfect romantic meal with these handy tips and tricks.

We grill Dunbar House Head Chef Keith Murray about how to set the stage for a romantic meal.

1. What is the most romantic meal you have ever shared?

That’s a tough one! The most romantic meal was, of course, shared with my beautiful wife in a small French restaurant in Dublin. This was at a place where I started my apprenticeship, called La Mere Zou, and we had lobster thermidor and antipasti. There’s lots more but I think that one was the stand out!!

2. What foods do you think say ‘romance’ the best?

Seafood for me! Scallops, oysters and anything raw. I love raw seafood, although I’ve eaten live octopus before and that’s not quite so romantic!

3. What dish would you prepare for your Valentine?

It would have to be prawns to start, along with a lovely fresh tabouli and maybe a nice pickled ginger and mango salsa. For a main, it’d be scallops and risotto - light and lemony with lots of herbs, of course!

4. If you could whisk your valentine off to any romantic destination in the world, where would it be? Please explain.

It would have to be the Seychelles or Mauritius – ie some island with not much going on! It would be nice, relaxed and quiet, with enough restaurants to keep us pampered! Massages and sun - what could be any more romantic than that?

5. What is your best tip for home cooks who would like to cook a romantic meal?

My best tip is to prepare everything so that it looks simple… you don’t want to be caught with your pants down running around the kitchen and sweating! You’ll just ruin the whole thing! So stick to what you know and prepare the day before, so that special night will be an event. Even if it’s the only night you ever cook, trust me, that memory will be there forever! So good luck and happy cooking :)

For more information on Keith Murray and Dunbar house, head to

Learn how to prepare Keith's Pan Fried Scallops HERE and take a look at all our Valentine's Day recipes HERE

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