Friday, February 14, 2014

Date Night Dinner at Home


Like I mentioned recently, Hubster and I don't have many chances to go out on date nights. That doesn't mean we don't enjoy having date nights at home. For me, date night usually revolves around a nice dinner. A few of my favorites include Ruth's Chris, The Melting Pot, and Texas de Brazil.

For Valentine's, I though it would be nice to make a nice dinner at home, inspired by Ruth's Chris. I've made it before, and I was surprised by how effortless the process was. I used a few tricks that I learned on the Food Network, and the meal turned out a million times more delicious than I was expecting. The only thing missing from this ritzy dinner was an ultra attentive waiter and a pricey bill at the end. And maybe some creme brûlée, but I might even be attempting that this time around.

So.. On the menu: baked breaded mushrooms, filet mignon, and creamed spinach. The key to getting this dinner to come together at the same time is to be working on all aspects at once. It might sound complicated, but since everything is so simple, it's relatively easy to do all at once.

Baked Breaded Mushrooms
  • 8 oz box of whole mushrooms
  • 2 Eggs 
  • 1 tbsp Milk
  • 3/4 cup Italian Breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • Cooking spray
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F. Lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Clean and dry your mushrooms.
  3. Whisk together eggs and milk in a small bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the bread crumbs, cheese, and salt & pepper.
  4. Dip each mushroom in the egg mixture, then bread crumbs, and coat evenly.  Dip each mushroom a second time in the egg mixture, followed by bread crumbs, and place on baking sheet. 
  5. Lightly spray the tops of the mushrooms with cooking spray before placing in the oven.
  6. Bake for approximately 15 minutes, or until golden brown.
Filet Mignon
  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • 2 Filets/Boneless Tenderloin Steaks
  • Salt & Pepper
  1. Remove steak from refrigerator approximately half an hour before cooking to allow it to come to room temperature.
  2. Heat a pan over medium-high heat until hot. Melt butter in pan. 
  3. As the butter is melting, pat each steak dry with a paper towel. Season each side liberally with salt and pepper.
  4. Once the butter is hot and melted, add your steaks to the pan. DO NOT TOUCH THEM once you place them in the pan.
  5. Let each steak cook for approximately 5 minutes on each side without moving them. Depending on the thickness of your steaks, you may need to cook on each side a little longer, but you should only touch them once in order to flip them. Five minutes on each side of an inch(ish) thick steak got me medium rare. Use a meat thermometer to be sure it's done to your liking. 
  6. When done cooking, move the steaks to a plate, cover with foil, and allow to rest for 5 minutes.
Creamed Spinach
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 1/2 small Yellow Onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 10 oz. package of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1/2 cup Heavy Cream
  • dash Nutmeg
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  1. Melt butter in a pan over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic, and saute until soft, about 2 minutes. 
  2. Add spinach to pot and stir, until heat through.
  3. Add cream, nutmeg, and salt & pepper. Mix well to combine, and cook until cream has reduced by half, and is thick. 
Our plan is to be glued to Netflix all day catching the new season of House of Cards. I stocked up on Ben & Jerry's when I went grocery shopping this week. They had $1 off 2 coupons, and I couldn't resist.

Hope everyone has a lovely Valentine's day!

Linking up here!

Love, Alex

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  1. Aside from the fungus, this looks like a nice meal. And did you know that The Melting Pot does a military discount on Mondays? I think it's 20% off.

  2. Yum! Everything looks amazing. :)

  3. Yummy!! Love Ruth Chris, and I miss the melting pot so much we bought a fondue set! haha. We just did a date night in last night with pizza and an antipasto plate. Sometimes you have to just take what you can get right?

  4. Ahaha. I have to agree with Lisa - I'm not a huge mushroom fan! I like that your recipe is for pan cooked steaks because we don't have a grill.

  5. Those mushrooms look so good!

  6. what a delicious meal! Sometimes at home date nights are my favorite kinds!


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