Celebrate Valentines Day
Enjoy a Romantic Dinner at Home
Planning a romantic Valentine’s dinner for two? Well, with Valentine’s Day just around the corner, you may find it hard to get a reservation at that fancy and expensive steak house. Instead, plan for a special night at home, full of good food and good company.
Having a steak house dinner at home is easy, more personal, and a lot less expensive. Here are four tips to help ensure you have a successful night with your loved one, no matter the occasion.
Dinner at home should be relaxed and stress free. Coordinate your schedule with your loved one so that you both will be home at the same time with no interruptions. Plan a dinner menu and select foods that the both of you like. Shop for your dinner ingredients in advance and prepare as much as you can beforehand.
Take this time to focus on each other and enjoy good company. Arrange for babysitting at a family member’s house for the kids or plan to enjoy your dinner after they have gone to bed. Turn off the television, computer and cell phones. Clean your home and keep your kitchen clean as you work and prepare your dinner.
Set the Mood
Dim the lights and light candles throughout your entire home. Set the dining room table with a clean, crisp tablecloth, your finest dishes, and a vase of vibrant, fresh flowers. Play sentimental songs softly in the background and get dressed for the occasion.
Keep dinner simple but plan to serve an appetizer, main course, and dessert to make your special night together last for hours. Consider foods that require interaction and connection with each other, such as fondue; or serve up a menu full of “love” foods. Aphrodisiacs are foods that have been enjoyed for centuries for their love inducing powers. Recent scientific studies have proven that these foods really do have the ability to lower inhibitions and heighten moods. Honey, oysters, chocolate, strawberries, vanilla, and asparagus are just a few of these love foods that you might want to include in your romantic dinner.
With these tips, a little planning, and some creative resourcefulness, a special evening at home can be a night to remember! Serve up this classic seared sirloin with a bake potato, wedge salad and of course chocolate dipped strawberries for dessert!
Seared Sirloin with Sweet Balsamic Sauce
Prep Time: 5 minutes Cook Time: 15 minutes Serves: 4
1 pound boneless sirloin steak, 1" thick
1/4 cup red wine (water or beef broth maybe substituted)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
Place a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium high heat until hot. Add beef and cook 4 minutes. Turn and cook 4 minutes longer or to your desired doneness.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine remaining sauce ingredients. Stir to blend and set aside. When beef is done, place on cutting board, cover with foil to keep warm, and let stand. Add sauce mixture to pan residue in skillet.
Bring to a boil over medium high heat and cook 1-2 minutes, scraping bottom and sides of skillet. Thinly slice beef and spoon sauce over to serve.
Chef Heather Hunsaker attended and graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, but has been developing family friendly meals since she was nine years old in her mother’s kitchen. She is an avid crockpotter and knows how to get food on the table in a pinch. She currently serves as a writer and recipe developer for meal planning site www.foodonthetable.com.