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As the saying goes: the way to someone’s heart is through their stomach! For a memorable Valentine’s Day with your one and only, show your love by preparing a surprise romantic candle-lit dinner at home instead of going to a restaurant so you can enjoy a cozier and more intimate evening for two. Follow our tips for a night to remember.

Plan ahead

Make sure your sweetheart will be out for a couple of hours to prepare a dinner as surprizing as it will be memorable. This way you’ll have enough time to get the meal ready. You’ll simply need to heat it up or put it on the table when the time comes. Also, go for calm: turn off phones, leave the kids with a sitter, and make sure your pets are cared for so they don’t disturb.

Prepare your menu

Start the evening off with some hors d’oeuvres or a simple starter. Light canapés, a fresh salad, a comforting soup, or oysters make a great beginning to a cozy evening for two. For the main course, make sure the prep doesn’t involve too many steps, dishes to wash, or clean-up during and after the meal. All your attention should be on your sweetheart! The essentials? One-pot or one-pan meals such as grilled beef medallions, stir-fry chicken or foil-wrapped salmon, with a side of pan-roasted vegetables. Avoid heavy or fatty dishes and instead go for classy, simple and light. This is also not the time to attempt a meal you’ve never made before with a prep that risks going wrong! Feeling adventurous? Try aphrodisiacs! Oysters, asparagus, chocolate and cinnamon are some examples you could add to your menu. For a sweet finish, surprise your significant other with his or her favourite dessert or put a selection of sweets on the table—ce cream with berries, a chocolate fondant to share, and so on! And don’t forget drinks! Wine is the most romantic choice. Choose white wine to pair with fish, seafood or salads, and red wine to pair with red meat or game dishes. And champagne served for dessert is always a showstopper.

Create the mood

Beyond the meal, romance is also found in the mood you set! Pull out all the stops—use the good china and decorate your table with a lovely bouquet of flowers or some rose petals. Turn down the lights, light up some candles, play soft music, and make it a night to remember.   Happy Valentine’s Day!