This Valentine's Day, cooking can be easy, nutritious, inexpensive and fun for you and your loved ones Image Credit: Shutterstock

You can get in the pink this Valentine’s Day by serving your family a menu of red specialties. Some do that just to be in fashion for the occasion — and the theme does make for a fun day — but there is even more reason to colour-code your heartfelt recipes.

Research shows the deeper red or any dark colour, like purple, produce is, such as red bell peppers, tomatoes, cherries, pomegranates and apples, the more protective antioxidants it provides.

Round out meals with further tickle-me-pink choices, like nutrient-packed pink salmon, which is delicious and economical when bought frozen, and you are in for a day when love is not only in the air but on the family dinner table as well.

Cooking can be easy, nutritious, inexpensive, fun — and fast — as the following split-second sensations prove. They take just 10 seconds each to read and are almost that quick to prepare.

The creative combinations are delicious proof everyone has time for tasty home cooking and, more importantly, the healthy family togetherness that goes along with it!

Another benefit: You effortlessly become a better cook since there are no right or wrong amounts. These are virtually-can’t-go-wrong combinations, so whatever you — or your kid helpers — choose to use can’t help but draw wows from all the sweethearts in your family.

Appetiser: Shake a pom-pom and cheer for pomegranates

Place pomegranate juice or purple grape juice in a saucepan, season with ground cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg, and heat until reduced and syrupy. Section segments of pink or other grapefruit and place on salad plates. Carefully drizzle sauce over pieces and top with pomegranate seeds.

Entree: Pink salmon for your sweethearts

Drain and flake poached pink salmon, and combine with a small amount of low-fat mayonnaise, ground pink or black peppercorns, a dash of red cayenne pepper, rosemary, dill, finely diced red bell pepper and grape tomatoes.

Spread into red-colored, red pepper-flavored or other flour

tortillas, place in a microwave-safe container and warm slightly in microwave oven, or wrap in aluminum foil and warm slightly in oven.

Side dish: Couscous to leave you cooing

Prepare couscous according to package directions and, when done, stir in diced dried cherries and cranberries, tomatoes, carrots and celery, as well as curry sauce. Reheat and serve drizzled with chopped fresh mint.

Healthy dessert: An apple a day the fun way

In blender, puree seedless red grapes, add vanilla and almond extracts, and season with freshly ground black pepper and anise. Heat until warm and drizzle over heated store-bought apple pie that’s been topped with vanilla ice cream.

- Creators.com