Every month Craft Gin Club member, Carol Donner concocts a meal using the specially selected gin or botanical from that month. With the arrival of February, comes all the romance of Valentine’s Day. She’s a true romantic and celebrates love every year by sharing a delicious meal with her wonderful husband.
February Gin of the Month is French, and what better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than with a three-course feast of ginspired dishes using a spirit from the most romantic country in the world!? All three of these delicious dishes incorporate Naud Gin. The main is rich with the flavours of the botanicals in the gin. So, settle in for a romantic evening and enjoy a menu put together especially for you and the gin lover in your life. Begin with pasta in a creamy gin, tomato and parmesan sauce (this also works as a main course for any vegetarians!). Then move onto a delicious lamb tagine with Naud Gin botanicals before finishing with a fresh, zingy gin and lemon mousse. Enjoy!
Linguine with Gin Sauce
1. Sauté the onion in the oil over a low heat for 5 minutes, or until the onion is soft but not browned. Add the garlic and chilli flakes (if using). Cook for a further minute. Add the passata, Tabasco (if using), sugar and gin. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Now add the cream, parmesan cheese and basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
2. Cook the pasta according to instructions. Drain the pasta and toss into the sauce.
3. Serve with extra parmesan cheese and a sprig of basil.
½ small onion, finely diced
2 tbsp good olive oil
1 clove of garlic, chopped
Pinch of dried chilli flakes or a dash of Tabasco
1 tsp sugar
125ml Naud Gin
125ml double cream
80g grated fresh parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
Handful of fresh basil, chopped
250g fresh linguine pasta (or any pasta will do)
Salt and pepper
Lamb Tagine with Gin Botanicals
1. Place all the spices in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Add half the spice mix to the lamb and stir until the meat is coated. Leave in the fridge overnight to marinate.
2. Preheat the oven to 150°C/Gas 2. Put the oil in a large casserole dish or tagine, add the onion and remaining spice mix and cook on the hob for 10 minutes over a low heat. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
3. Brown the lamb in a separate frying pan, then tip it into the tagine or casserole dish. Add a little passata to the pan you cooked the lamb in and turn up the heat, scraping up any bits of lamb and spices, then add this to your tagine or casserole dish. Add the rest of the passata with the tinned tomatoes, Naud Gin, apricots, sultanas, almonds and stock.
4. Bring to the boil, then cook in the oven for 2 hours or until tender. Garnish with chopped coriander and parsley before serving.
1 tsp ground ginger
1 ½ tbsp ground cinnamon
4 juniper berries, crushed
3 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed
¼ tsp grated nutmeg 1 tsp coarse ground black pepper
2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground paprika ¼ tsp ground cloves
750g leg of lamb, diced
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, very finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, sliced
400g tin chopped tomatoes
125ml Naud Gin
60g dried apricots, halved
50g flaked almonds
300ml lamb or beef stock Chopped fresh coriander and parsley, to serve
Zingy gin and lemon mousse
1. Place the gelatine leaves in a bowl and cover with cold water. Leave to soak for 5 minutes. (Because of how alcohol affects gelatine, this is a softset mousse – do not add any more gelatine!)
2. In another bowl, whisk the egg yolk and sugar together until thick and pale. Add lemon juice and gin, a little at a time, and whisk well. Add the lemon zest.
4. Put the gelatine and water into a microwave. Heat for 30-40 seconds until melted. Beat into the egg yolk mixture.
5. Whisk the cream to a soft peak, and fold into the egg yolk mixture. Pop into the fridge to chill for 10 minutes.
6. Whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks. Add a spoonful of egg white to the chilled yolk mix and stir briskly to slacken the mix. Gently fold in the remaining egg whites. Spoon into serving dishes and chill until set. This will take about 2 hours.
7. To serve, pop thin slices of lemon on top of each mousse and finish with a drizzle of neat gin.
2 leaves of gelatine
25ml cold water
1 large free-range egg, separated
110g caster sugar
20ml lemon juice
Finely grated zest of half a lemon
25ml Naud Gin
85ml whipping cream
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