How to Wow Your Date with Starters before the Main as a Student Cook

Starters are perfect for dates. As a student, your date won’t expect you to cook anything other than a main course, so when you bring out a starter, it’s a subtle way of showing how much you care.

Warm King Prawn Salad

Prawns are a classic starter, and this decadent dish is sure to impress.

If you’re using frozen prawns, place them in a dish covered with cling film and defrost overnight in the fridge. When the prawns are defrosted, drain any water.

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

Serves: 2

Handful of green beans

3 handfuls of mixed salad, rinsed and drained

1/4 red onion, finely sliced

Olive oil

10 cherry tomatoes

6 large prawns, shelled

Small chunk of butter

1 clove of garlic, crushed

2 teaspoons of chopped chives

Salt and pepper

  1. Put a small saucepan of water on to boil over a high heat and, when boiling, add a pinch of salt and the green beans.

  2. When the green beans are cooked, drain them and then run them under the cold water tap for a minute until they’re cool.

  3. Place the salad in a bowl and add the finely sliced red onion.

  4. Pour a drop of the olive oil into the frying pan and heat over a medium heat. When hot, fry the cherry tomatoes until they soften and then add them to the salad.

  5. Add a drop more oil to the pan and turn the heat down to low. Add the prawns and cook for about 2 minutes or until they turn pink. Turn them over in the pan and add a chunk of butter and the crushed garlic. Continue cooking for a further 3 minutes and then turn off the heat and stir in the chopped chives.

  6. Drizzle some olive oil over the salad and toss lightly with your hands, making sure the salad is evenly coated in the oil.

  7. Arrange the green beans around the edge of the plate and place the salad in the centre. Top with the garlicky prawns and serve.

Per serving: Calories 272 (From Fat 194); Fat 21.5g (Saturated 9.2g); Cholesterol Trace; Sodium 142mg; Carbohydrate 6.5g; Dietary Fibre 3.2g; Protein 13.0g.

Prawn and Horseradish Salad

This tasty starter comes with a bit of a kick, so make sure that your date likes fairly strong flavours.

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: Nil

Serves: 2

2 handfuls of cooked and shelled prawns

6 spoonfuls of mayonnaise

2 teaspoons of horseradish sauce

2 teaspoons of chopped chives

Salt and pepper

2 small handfuls of mixed leaf salad, washed and drained

  1. Place the prawns, mayonnaise and horseradish sauce in a bowl and carefully mix together. Add one teaspoon of the chopped chives and mix.

  2. Neatly arrange the salad on two plates and top with the prawn mixture.

  3. Sprinkle the remaining chives over in a fancy fashion and serve.

Per serving: Calories 435 (From Fat 329); Fat 36.5g (Saturated 5.6g); Cholesterol Trace; Sodium 292mg; Carbohydrate 2.5g; Dietary Fibre 1.0g; Protein 24.0g.

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