Cool off or warm up with naturally red beverages this Valentine’s Day. Each offering something unique, from spicy to sparkling to sweet, you’re sure to find a recipe or two to satisfy your thirst and romance your Valentine. And, all of these recipes are non-alcoholic, so guests of all ages can imbibe.
Beyond alluring beauty, ruby-red beverages provide heart-healthy benefits. Red produce, including red grapefruit and tomatoes, provides lycopene, a cardiovascular-supportive nutrient. Dark, richly red fruits such as cherries, cranberries, pomegranates, and raspberries, all featured in these recipes, bring not only sweetness but also antioxidants, another heart-healthy feature that reduces the oxidation that can lead to coronary complications.
Pick your pleasure and drink to your heart, and your heart’s content, this Valentine’s Day.
Sparkling Pomegranate and Grapefruit “Sangria”
Cherry, Blood Orange, and Ginger Kombucha Spritz
Red Berry, Rose, and Almond Smoothie Bowl
Red Hot Tomato and Carrot Caesar
Mulled Cranberry Apple Rooibos Tea
Coconut Black Forest Hot Chocolate
Special surprises for your Valentine
A range of heart-shaped cookie cutters in various sizes can turn sandwiches, cheese, fruit, pancakes, eggs, and more into festive bites. If it’s too cutesy for the adult Valentine in your life, kids will gobble this idea up.
Edible rose petals
Get a love lesson from the Middle East, and infuse your baked goods with rosewater and garnish your dishes with edible rose petals. Cakes, brownies, and yogurt in particular shine with rose.
Banana love notes
Using a toothpick or the tip of a paring knife, write a note on a banana peel to tuck into your Valentine’s lunch. (Don’t cut all the way through to the flesh; just nick the surface.) The banana etching will oxidize, revealing your note on the yellow skin by noon.
Food you can assemble and eat with your hands is the most romantic of all. Dips, chocolate fondue, s’mores made over a tealight, spring rolls, asparagus, olives, and green beans are best enjoyed without utensils.
Ravish with red
Make your food pop with red food dye found naturally in plants. Red fruit juices, mashed raspberries, beet juice, crushed tomatoes, and roasted red peppers can infuse pancake and waffle batters, smoothies, eggs, pasta, blondies, breads, and cream-based desserts with a pleasing gradient of blush pink to cherry red.
A second first-date meal
What did you eat on your first date? Was it ramen? Tacos? Pizza? Whatever it was, make it at home together, and recreate those first encounter butterflies.
February’s cold and blustery weather makes a picnic al fresco out of the question. So, take the romantic spread inside. Clear the living room floor, lay down a blanket, and serve up a range of picnic favourites in the comfort and warmth of home.
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