Chef Rahul Sharma takes us through his idea of an edgy celebration of love, with a mouthwateringly playful survival kit for Valentine’s Day
It’s almost Valentine’s Day. That means an overwhelming amount of flowers, balloons, chocolates, teddies, swooning couples as far as the eye goes, and an obscene amount of red and pink.
If you haven’t managed to snag a date this far, chances are you’re getting through the official day of love alone. Or better still, with friends, family, or even your pet, making for a less corny but equally sweet Valentine’s.
Here to save the day with an aptly titled Valentine’s Day Survival Kit is Araku Coffee. Curated by the talented Chef Rahul Sharma, here’s the option to pig out on a delicious four-course meal delivered to your doorstep, best consumed solo. Available in two packages, choose between two and three menu items served with some of Araku’s most excellent coffee.
Inspiration for Chef Rahul came in a brainstorming session with the team. “The whole idea is that we wanted to keep it as a very fun event, trying to focus on people who were single. We wanted to keep it peppy for everyone who is generally not part of the major celebrations on Valentine’s Day. So it was a cool and fun idea that we as a team came up with while brainstorming on what we can do. Which is the part of society that nobody thinks of on this day? This one’s for the people who want to have fun on this day and deserve it too.”
The menu, which took the team just 4 or 5 days to get right, reflects the fun they probably had coming up with it. Each dish comes with its uniquely hilarious description, making the entire experience fun for singles from start to finish. The Chicken Heart Yakitori for instance is described as ‘For when you feel like you’ve been stabbed in the heart (literally)’! Incidentally, this is also one of Chef Rahul’s favourite items on the menu.
The rest of the menu comprises a similar fun set of items, all designed to be fun, wholesome, carby, and comfortable. From Sweet Potato Fries with Real Jerk Seasoning to Smashed Cheese with Tomatoes, the menu is perfect for a binge session at home. The dishes are also carefully curated to avoid aphrodisiacs, so you’re safe in the warmth of what’s primarily fun and tasty food.
While the Valentine’s Day Survival Kit is definitely unique to what Araku traditionally does, Chef Rahul hasn’t deviated from their general food philosophy. “It is different from the kind of food we do, but not different from the overall philosophy of food. The menu talks about ingredients, so it’s a fun take on ingredient focused food in a new way. The ingredient is the highlight, but we’ve added the whole survival concept. It’s all farm focused, key ingredients like sweet potatoes that we grow on our own farms. The philosophy is the same, just the menu changed a bit to suit the idea,” he adds.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the decadent desserts of course. Completing the wholesome V-Day Survival Kit are the Broken Shell Pie, and the Clotted Cream and Rhubarb (this one’s highly recommended!).
These kits are exclusively available for home ordering via the Airmenus platforms on February 14th, i.e, D-Day. Clarifying further, Chef Rahul adds, “We were also thinking of doing a dine-in, but this was something we wanted to be careful about. We didn’t want to offend anyone. But everyone we spoke to said that because the day has been popularised for love, you don’t want to come out and see people and wonder why you’re alone. That’s the whole idea we wanted to leave behind, so let’s take baby steps. Maybe next year we could do this at the cafe, who knows!”
Packed with Araku’s refreshing bottled cold brews, this Valentine’s Day Survival Kit has ensured singles don’t have to feel left out this year. So, whether you’re dining alone, hunkering down with friends, or sharing the evening with an equally cliché-averse partner, there’s no reason why you can’t have your gloom and eat your way through it too!