With February 14th just around the corner, here are some of our favorite options for a romantic dinner, along with some quick cooking tips to keep the lovebirds in the kitchen.
Porterhouse for Two
Without a doubt the perfect sharing steak, but while bringing some fun to the table as well. Cut from the short loin, it contains both a Filet Mignon and a New York Strip steak, joined by a bone. Hearty, dramatic and versatile, a Porterhouse steak offers an experience in exploration of texture and flavor.
Cooking Tips: Sear both sides of the steak, then transfer to a preheated 350 degree oven for approx. 20 minutes. Using a cast iron skillet to sear will give a more dramatic crust to the finished product, but a Teflon pan works well too (and if you’re a guy, it’s easy to clean!). A neat trick for serving is to use a thin knife to scribe each side of the bone and cut each piece off, then slice into 1.5” thick portions and reassemble on the bone.
The gold girl standard in tenderness, Filets are a great option for special occasions (and if you put two side by side and squint your eyes it almost looks like a heart… according to Bryan). For those who like to cook, the relatively small portion size of the filet allows room for plenty of other side dishes.
Cooking Tips: Heat a pan to medium-high with a little oil (you want it hot, but not ‘sear’ hot), then cook the filet(s) for 6-8 minutes on the first side, then finish with 2-3 minutes on the second side. If you’re worried about too much smoke in the kitchen, try using grape seed oil instead of olive oil.
For the true ‘steak lovers’ out there, the “Jorge” Ribsteak is the ultimate in great beefy flavor. For anyone who wants to surprise their sweetie with a giant hunk of meat, this is the way to go!
Cooking Tips: The Jorge will have a similar cooking method to the Porterhouse steak – sear first on the stovetop, then finish in a 350 degree oven for roughly 25 minutes. To serve, slice the meat on the bone. Start at the opposite side of the bone, keeping your cuts parallel to the bone. Eventually you’ll have to scribe along the bone, but you’ll have cut the majority of the steak before that.
Rack of Lamb
Another great option for Valentine’s Day, a classic rack of lamb is a relatively easy dish to prepare that never fails to impress. Throw the rack in the oven, toss together a quick salad along with some crusty bread, and voila! The perfect romantic dinner.
Cooking Tips: Place the rack in a preheated 400 degree oven for 45 minutes, it’s that easy. This cut can also be a great opportunity for experimentation – a mustard/herb coating will give restaurant worthy results at your home dining table. When carving, keep in mind that this is a slight curve to the bones, so you won’t want to slice directly down between the chops. Slice with a small ‘arc’ motion to follow the natural contours of the bone, and make serving a breeze.