Because I’ll be at a concert with friends this weekend, and also because we wanted to beat the crowds, Zach and I decided to celebrate Valentine’s Day this past Friday night.
For a while now, I’ve been talking about doing a date night where we cook dinner at home, but then go out for dessert/drinks afterwards, so that was our plan.
Our night started after work on Friday. I wanted to get a quick run in, and Zach wanted to get a nap in. While I went to the gym, Zach took a nap on the couch with the cats. I ran 5 miles on the treadmill at about a 10:45 pace, and when I came back, this is what I saw:
Ha! I swear, she isn’t really about to steal his soul, she was just surprised by the flash. I thought it was funny, though.
I made myself presentable and let Zach nap a little longer. After I was pretty, I started cooking. On the menu, NY Strip Steak, baked potatoes and green salad with homemade Greek dressing.
Whenever I’m about to cook something basic (steak, baked potatoes), I first search Google to see how Alton Brown suggests doing it. Luckily, he never steers me wrong. I cooked the steak per his instruction and it turned out perfectly medium rare:
Look at that giant steak! Of course, I didn’t eat the whole thing, but it was perfectly cooked. Here’s how I did it:
First, I set the steaks out about an hour before I was going to cook them, to get them up to room temperature. I took a tiny bit of canola oil and rubbed the steaks down with oil, kosher salt, cracked black peppercorns, and a few other spices. Then, I put my cast iron skillet into a very hot (500 degree) oven, and turned a burner up to high heat. Once the skillet was very hot, I pulled it out of the oven (using mitts, of course), and set it on the burner. Using long tongs, I set each steak into the skillet and let it sear on each side for 30 seconds. Then, I put the whole skillet with the steaks back into the oven, and let it cook on each side for exactly 2 minutes. That’s it! The steaks were medium rare and perfect.
After our delicious dinner, we headed out to Huntington Prime for drinks and dessert. Our friend Shane was working at the bar, so we sat at the bar and ordered our desserts and drinks based on his suggestions:
On the left are my choices. I can’t remember what the drink was called, but it had a blueberry vodka base, blueberries, lemons, some kind of delicious juice and…well, who knows what else. It was fruity and delicious, but I really liked Zach’s drink better. He got a bourbon based drink, and though it looks pretty fruity, it wasn’t at all. For our desserts, I got the hot chocolate cheesecake and he got the strawberry bavarian cream cake. I’m hungry just typing this post! Both desserts were amazing.
It was such a successful date! If we had done a steak dinner and dessert out, we likely would have spent more than $100, but as it was we spent less than $50 on the whole meal, but it still felt like a fancy date night.
I even had enough steak leftover to make steak fajitas for dinner the next night:
I added in some chicken too, and I ate these leftovers all weekend. Yum!
Valentine’s Date Night 2013 was a success! It’s hard to believe next Valentine’s Date Night will be as a married couple! 🙂
Question of the Day:
How do you keep date night costs down?