A Change of Heart | Valentine’s Day 2014

Historically i’ve never been a fan of Valentine’s Day. Personally i’m a fan of randomly surprising your partner with gifts when they least expect it, sharing kind gestures for no reason and loving them every day rather than just on one predefined money-spinning day of love. However whether it’s the pull of a new relationship or just that i’m going a bit soft in my old age, i thoroughly embraced valentine’s day this year and do you know what? I loved every second.

.For Him.

Every weekend Joe cooks me a naughty bacon sandwich for breakfast and it’s become a kind of unwritten rule. He gets up, pops the kettle on and makes me a decaf soy tea in my favourite mug and then he sets about making bacon. One morning i was busy beavering away editing photos and making the most of a productive Saturday morning when a perfectly prepared bacon sandwich appeared in front of me and it suddenly hit me that we’ve settled into this adorable routine. My thank you and smile must have been laden with more enthusiasm than usual because it was followed with a kiss on the cheek and the phrase:

 ‘It’s ok, I love you, that’s why i make you bacon.’

That little phrase sort of just stuck around and made us both smile when we thought of it so for Valentine’s Day i made Joe my own version of our Saturday morning sandwich in the shape of a box of Beer & Bacon Cupcakes (with maple syrup frosting!) accompanied by a very professional looking homemade card with our little phrase and a big ribbon on top! They went down very well and earned the prize of most thoughtful Valentine’s present he’d ever received (win) and not to mention he also thought i’d bought them from a bakery at first! (big thanks to Beth who gave me a crash course in fancy icing!). They ended up costing me a fortune and a good couple of hours in the kitchen but it was all worth it to see the look on his face when he saw them, and of course tasted them!

.For Her.

With an adorable card, a bottle of fizz and an evening full of amazing home cooked food, my presents from the boy were simply perfect. By his own admission he’s not the best chef and throwing himself into the kitchen to produce anything that doesn’t involve beans and toast is incredibly daunting! So imagine my surprise when he whipped out a three course meal that was absolutely delicious and did it with such style that i didn’t have to lift a finger or suffer the tragedy of an empty glass all night.

Starting with a bottle of my favourite Champagne we tucked into a sharing board of Cured Meats, Olives, Grilled Halloumi, Stuffed Peppers and fresh Ciabatta with Oils and Glaze. It was absolutely perfect and set us up just right for our main course of Italian Herb Chicken with Garlic, White Wine and Butter Tagliatelle served with the best home made Ciabatta Garlic Bread you’ve ever tasted! It was amazing and unfortunately for the boy that means he’ll be in the kitchen more often after this. Dessert was simple, elegant and just what the doctor ordered to finish off an amazing Valentine’s Day evening – Dark Chocolate Covered Strawberries with a bottle of deliciously sweet  and cold Prosecco. We both got dressed up even though we were only staying in and it made for a wonderful night.

It was the perfect evening and the best Valentine’s Day i’ve ever had. Here’s proof that Valentine’s doesn’t have to commercial and even though ours was still soppy and a little cheesy in parts there wasn’t a stuffed bear or heart shaped box of chocolates in sight and it gave us an excellent excuse to eat amazing food, drink lots of champagne and spend some quality time together ♥