Monday, April 28, 2014

Awesome Date Night Dinner, Made By Me

Someone is really lucky to get this dinner!
So for the delay in posting, life has just gotten the better of me over the last three weeks between sickness and other things going on. So I will be trying to catch up.

Having a child makes it harder to have date nights where we go out, so we have had to be creative. So for this date night I cooked dinner and it was fantastic. We had beer on tap, steak to grill and some other awesome things in the meal. 

If you know me at all you have heard the story of the last time I made mashed potatoes it did not go well. I think what I actually made was cement that was not edible and quickly made it to the trash can. Since that night I have not been allowed to make mashed potatoes in fear that I would waste food and ruin the meal. That changed on this night.

On the menu for the night:

Flank Steak
Bacon Wrapped Asparagus
Cheddar, Onion Garlic Mashed Potatoes

And for dessert

Raspberry Cobbler with Dark Chocolate Biscuits

There would be more pictures but some foods don't take great pictures when you are an untrained photographer. Overall the dinner was excellent and we even had time to play a game afterwards...which Kristin won. I attribute it to beginners luck since she had never played phase ten before.

Here are the recipes 

Look at that steak marinading, so good!
Flank Steak
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup dark beer
1/4 cup lemon juice
4 cloves garlic, smashed
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Mix it all together and add the steak and marinate for 12-24 hours. Then grill to your liking.

Mashed Potatoes:
8 servings, about 1 cup each | Active Time: 20 minutes | Total Time: 45 minutes

3 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes cut into 11/2-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups shredded extra-sharp Cheddar cheese, divided
3/4 cup nonfat buttermilk
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup sliced fresh chives, divided
2 tablespoons of olive oil
4 cloves of garlic
1 onion

Place potatoes in a large Dutch oven and add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat. Boil until very tender when pierced with a fork, 20 to 25 minutes. 

Sauté the garlic and onions in olive oil with a little bit of salt and pepper. Set aside

Remove from the heat. Drain and return the potatoes to the pot. Mash with a potato masher. Stir in 1 1/4 cups cheese until melted. Add buttermilk, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Gently fold in 3 tablespoons chives. Mix in the sautéed garlic and onions.

Transfer to a serving bowl and enjoy.

Bacon Wrapped Asparagus:

Yum Yum
1 Bunch of Asparagus
1/2 pound of bacon
Salt (to your liking)
Pepper (to your liking) 
1 tablespoon of Olive Oil
1 tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar

Break off the ends of Asparagus. Cut the bacon in half. Take one piece of bacon and wrap it around the Asparagus, place it on foil on a cookie sheet. Once all of the asparagus is wrapped, drizzle the Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar over the asparagus. Then Salt and Pepper to your liking. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes and then flip and cook for another 10-15 minutes until the bacon is cooked

Raspberry Cobbler with Dark Chocolate Biscuits
Yield: 6-8 servings

For the filling:
24 oz. frozen raspberries
3½ tbsp. sugar
3 tbsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp. vanilla extract

For the biscuits:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder
3 tbsp. sugar
Pinch of salt
4 oz. (8 tbsp.) unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
2 oz. coarsely chopped chocolate

Preheat the oven to 425˚ F.  Lightly grease a 2 to 2.5 quart baking dish. In the dish, combine the raspberries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice and vanilla.  Fold together gently with a spatula until evenly mixed.  Transfer to the oven and bake 10 minutes without the topping.

Meanwhile, make the biscuits.  In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, sugar, and salt.  Whisk well to blend.  Add in the butter pieces and toss with the dry ingredients.  Cut the butter into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender or two knives until the mixture is crumbly and the largest butter pieces are the size of small peas.  Stir in the buttermilk and mix gently with a fork until a dough begins to form.  Knead together gently, just until the dry ingredients are incorporated.  Gently fold in the chopped chocolate.  Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and pat down into an even layer about 1 inch thick.  Use a cookie cutter to cut out heart-shaped biscuits, rerolling dough scraps if needed.

Add the biscuits to the warmed fruit and return the baking dish to the oven.  Bake about 15-20 minutes more, until the fruit mixture is bubbling and the biscuits are just set and baked through.  (The juices will settle after resting a few minutes, but if the fruit is too juicy, feel free to spoon a bit of the juice off or wick away with paper towels.)  Serve warm, with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream if desired.

All Recipes that I used are located here:

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