The new cool for Lockdowners is the ‘Makeaway’ – dishes you order from your favourite restaurant which delivers all the pre-prepped ingredients for you to add the finishing touches at home, at a time to suit you.
Popular local pub group, Oakman Inns, which owns five Hertfordshire pubs – Kings Arms Berkhamsted, Banyers House Royston, Beech House St Albans, Red Lion Water End and The Akeman in Tring – has, with their usual flair, launched their ‘Oakman At Home’ kits, initially featuring a brace of their most popular dishes, with plans to expand the service in the next few weeks.
This week, they’ve added a sumptuous ‘Romantic Valentine’s Feast for Two’ which their Valentine’s guests would normally enjoy if they were spending the most romantic night of the year at their local Oakman Inn. But this year, their award-winning Chef Director, Ross Pike, has created a special three course meal with what he hopes will infuse the evening with a little bit of extra love. He said: ‘We’ve selected the most popular dishes that couples ordered last year on Valentine’s Day and, to ensure they are as simple as possible to finish at home, my team and I have trialled them ourselves at our own homes to perfect the prepping and the all-important instructions and video. The last thing we want to do is create a lover’s tiff in the kitchen.’
The Valentine’s Meal Box, available for delivery nationwide, includes a bottle of prosecco, which can be upgraded to champagne, and up to four courses of lovingly prepared premium quality produce. Pop the cork to accompany nibbles while the first course – Aubergine Parmigiana Ravioli served with Focaccia is baking. This is followed by a choice of two main courses – Dry Aged British Sirloin Steak with triple cooked chips and peppercorn sauce or a Baked Mushroom Wellington – both of which are accompanied by Caramelised Onion Cauliflower Gratin, Cavolo Nero and Roasted Garlic. Share the tantalisingly sweet Baked Vanilla Cheesecake with passion fruit (of course) and hot white chocolate sauce. If you want to go Continental, you could order an additional cheese course, to eat before or after the dessert.
To help celebrate the day and spread the love, Oakman has launched a search to find a special Valentine’s Day Couple. They’re asking their customers via social media to nominate a couple living near one of their pubs who deserve a Valentine’s Day to remember or a big thank you. Maybe a nursing neighbour, whose partner has been educating the kids while they’ve been working at the local hospital; a couple forced to celebrate a silver or golden wedding anniversary on their own or a couple who deserve a token of love from their grandchildren. The winning couple will receive an Oakman At Home four course Valentine’s Day Feast for Two with champagne, plus a £100 voucher to celebrate in their local Oakman, once pubs and restaurants are allowed to open again.