For Victoria Murray, the most romantic nights are often spent in the kitchen, cooking with your loved one. “It’s a great way for couples to connect,” she says. “There is an element of teamwork: You have to read the instructions and execute a meal together. And depending on how you are in the kitchen, the recipe could turn out as expected — or like an episode of ‘Nailed It!’”
This Valentine’s Day, get adventurous and try your hand at homemade sushi. “It’s an elevated dish that people don’t try at home, but it’s easy,” says Murray, owner of Soul Child, a holistic wellness program that incorporates nutritional cooking, meditation and yoga. “You cannot just use any raw fish. It is important to get sashimi-grade fish. My go-to fishmonger is Metropolitan Seafood & Gourmet in Lebanon. You can also use canned fish like crab or tuna if you prefer.”
Murray recommends creating a whole experience by pouring wine and putting on Japanese music to set the mood.
Interested in cooking with Murray or having her cook for you? Visit soulchild.life. She also offers gift cards, which make a great Valentine’s Day gift.
Crab Avocado Roll and Spicy Tuna Roll with Garlic Edamame and Coconut Lime Lychee Sorbet with Raspberry Sauce and a Saketini Cocktail
2 medium carrots
1 English cucumber
1 ripe avocado
1/2 lb of sashimi-grade tuna
1/4 lb crab meat, cooked
1 package nori paper
Make 1 cup of sushi rice according to instructions of package. (Especially make sure to rinse the rice until water runs clear.) After rice is fully cooked, season with 2 tbsp of mirin, applying all over surface of the rice to evenly disperse. Set aside to cool.
Cut carrots into matchsticks.
Cut ¼ of cucumber off and reserve. Cut rest of cucumber in half lengthwise, then scoop out seeds and slice into matchsticks.
Cut avocado in half and remove skin and slice into thin strips.
Chop up tuna into a fine dice and mix with 1 tsp Sriracha. Taste and add more Sriracha if needed.
Drain crab if needed and blot off any excess moisture.
Combine ¼ cup Kewpie mayo with 1 tbsp Sriracha or to desired spiciness.
To assemble the sushi rolls:
Place bamboo rolling sheet inside a large zip-close bag. Place nori sheet shiny side up and wet fingertips with water and pick up rice, about ½ cup, and spread a thin layer across the nori. Flip over nori so rice is on the underside. Place a few strips of carrot, cucumber and avocado pieces on the nori then place about 1 ½ to 2 tbsp of crab on the lower half about 1 inch up from the bottom of the sheet and out to the edges of the nori. Roll up the nori from the bottom to the top, gently pulling the bamboo rolling sheet toward you. When the roll is complete, slice into ½-inch pieces. Repeat with tuna. Dip into soy sauce with muddled wasabi and pickled ginger or spicy mayo.
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 c edamame
Chop garlic and add to pan with 2 tbsp of soy sauce, then add edamame and toss together on medium-low heat with ¼ cup water and cover. Remove from pan once edamame is cooked and water has evaporated, about 5 minutes.
1 can full fat coconut milk
1 can lychees in syrup
1 jar raspberry jelly
In a blender, combine can of coconut milk and lychees drained with zest of 1 lime and juice of half and pinch of salt, then combine until fully incorporated. Taste and add additional lime juice or sugar if needed. Put in a container with lid and place in freezer. In a small saucepan, add ½ cup raspberry jelly and 3 tbsp of water on medium-low heat and stir until jelly becomes a sauce. Remove from heat.
1 1/2 inch of cucumber
Slice 4 thin slices of cucumber and place remainder in a cocktail shaker then muddle. Add 1 ½ oz of vodka, 1 ½ oz of sake and ¼ oz of simple syrup then shake with ice and serve in a martini glass with 2 thin cucumber slices.