As Cupid’s arrow draws nearer, tantalise your taste buds with a culinary journey crafted by some of the most talented chefs across Southern Sun hotels around the country. Elevating romance to new heights, our culinary maestros have meticulously curated a selection of recipes guaranteed to enchant your senses and ignite the flames of love this Valentine’s Day.

But fear not, for you need not don the chef’s hat this Valentine’s Day. Instead, treat yourself and your beloved to an unforgettable dining experience at one of our hotel restaurants. From the savoury to the sweet, each dish is a testament to the passion and expertise of our culinary team, promising an evening filled with culinary delights and cherished memories.

Savour the flavours of love and reserve your table today, as our chefs stand ready to delight you with even more delectable creations straight from their hearts to your plate. This Valentine’s Day, let us take care of the cooking while you focus on creating moments to cherish forever.

A Romantic Duo Of Lemon Scented Casanova Crumbed Oysters – Chef Shaun Munro from The Grill Jichana at Southern Sun Elangeni & Maharani

2 shucked oysters, keep shells for plating

½ cup flour

1 egg, beaten

1 cup bread crumbs mixed with the zest of one lemon, salt and pepper

1 cup frying oil

½ cup quality mayonnaise

1 clove garlic, minced

1tsp chopped parsley

pinch of course lemon black pepper

½t coarse salt

2 fresh lemon cheeks

  • Roll the shelled oysters in flour then egg and then bread crumbs, refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • Carefully heat the oil in a small saucepan and shallow fry the oysters for 45 seconds until golden brown then drain on kitchen paper towel.
  • Preheat oyster shells in oven at 180°C for 5 mins, remove and set aside until assembly.
  • Mix the mayonnaise with the garlic, parsley and the lemon pepper.
  • Assemble dish by simply placing the crumbed oyster into the warm oyster shell in oyster, place onto a serving plate on a bed of coarse salt and serve the mayo on the side for dipping with fresh cheeks.

Grilled line fish, preserved lemon risotto and citrus – Chef Phil de Villiers from Arabella Hote, Golf & Spa

Risotto

½ onion, finely diced

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

50g unsalted butter

150g risotto rice

500ml fresh chicken stock, hot

50g Parmesan, grated

75g mascarpone

10g parsley, chopped

30g preserved lemon skin, chopped

  • Melt the butter in a wide, deep frying pan and gently cook the garlic and onion for 2 minutes until soft but without colour. Add the rice and stir to coat in the butter.
  • Begin adding the stock a little at a time, stirring constantly. Continue adding the stock a spoonful at a time, waiting for the rice to absorb the liquid before adding more.
  • Check the texture of the rice towards the end – you want it to be nearly cooked with a slight bite.
  • Add the Parmesan, mascarpone and parsley and chopped lemon skin, mix well and taste for seasoning.
  • Keep warm while you cook the fish.

Fish

2 x 180g sustainably caught linefish fillets

Knob of butter

½ lemon

  • Heat a frying pan over a medium-high heat and add a knob of butter.
  • Cook the fish portions skin side down, finishing under the grill until just cooked.
  • Finish with a squeeze of lemon juice.

Poached orange slices

1 orange, sliced

3-4 threads saffron

2tbs sugar

100ml water

  • Bring the sugar and water to the boil with the saffron.
  • Add the orange slices to the liquid and switch off the heat and leave it to steep in the liquid overnight.

Top with pea shoots or picked fresh herbs and serve.

Pepper Crusted Ostrich Fillet – Chef Angelique Fassom from Southern Sun Rosebank

250g Ostrich fillet

Mashed potato

80g sautéed spinach

50g roasted baby onions

50g sautéed button mushroom

Chef’s Red Wine Jus (see recipe below)

  • Pepper crust the ostrich fillet and cook to desired temperature, best served medium rare as Ostrich is a lean meat.
  • Place a basting spoon of mash potato on the centre of the plate, place sautéed spinach on top.
  • Slice ostrich fillet and place next to mash then add sautéed pearl onions and mushrooms, drizzle with chef jus.

Chef’s Red Wine Jus

2 tsp olive oil

2 shallots, finely chopped

175ml port

175ml red wine

1 rosemary sprig

1 bay leaf

800ml beef stock

2 tbsp. butter

pinch sugar

  • Put the olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat and fry the shallots until golden and caramelized, about 10 mins.
  • Add the port, wine and herbs and simmer for 10 mins, or until reduced by half.
  • Pour in the stock and continue to cook until reduced by half again, then strain, discarding the shallots and herbs.
  • Transfer the sauce into a new pan and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter, then season to taste.

Heart Throb Butter Chicken Curry – Chef Athizaam Rassool from The Edward Hotel

For the chicken marinade:

350g or 2 skinless chicken breast fillet cut into 2cm cubes

½ cup plain yoghurt

½ tsp garlic crushed

½ teaspoon ginger crushed

1 tsp ground cumin / jeera

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp chilli powder

1 tsp fine salt

25g finely chopped coriander

For the sauce:

1 tbsp sunflower oil

1 tbsp butter ghee (clarified butter)

1 medium onion diced

1/2 tsp fresh ginger, finely chopped or ginger paste

2 tsp garlic finely chopped or garlic paste

20g finely chopped coriander leaves

½ cup tomato puree or 4 tbsp. tomato paste

½ tsp ground cumin / jeera

½ tsp ground coriander

1 tsp chilli powder (adjust to your taste preference)

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp kasoori methi leaves (dried fenugreek)

1 cup heavy cream or double cream plain yoghurt

1 tbsp sugar or honey

Salt to taste

  • In a bowl, combine chicken with all the ingredients for the chicken marinade, allow it to marinade for an hour or overnight in the refrigerator.
  • Heat oil in a large frying pan or pot over medium heat, when sizzling, add the chicken pieces in batches so you don’t crowd the pan, grill the chicken until brown and set aside (chicken will finish cooking in the sauce).
  • Heat oil and butter or ghee in the same pan, sauté onions until golden brown while scraping up any browned bits stuck in pan.
  • Add garlic, ginger, ground cumin, coriander and chilli powder and cook about 20 seconds until fragrant while stirring.
  • Add tomato puree or paste and salt, let it simmer for about 10-15 mins until sauce thickens.
  • Remove from heat and pour mixture into a blender and blend until smooth (you may need to add some water to help it blend).
  • Pour the blended sauce back into the pan, add in the cream / yoghurt, kasoori methi leaves and the chicken cubes with the juices into the pan and cook for a further 10-15 mins over medium heat until sauce is thick.
  • Taste for salt, garnish with fresh coriander, a tsp of plain yoghurt on top and serve with homemade naan bread, basmati rice or roti.

Visit www.southernsun.com/offers/celebrate-valentines-day to view the many Valentine’s packages on offer and make reservations. Bookings are essential. Seats are limited and subject to availability.

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