Steak Dinner- sides needed
First dinner with the new beau and I am a little nervous/ stressing about what to make. I was going to go with grilled rib-eye with sauteed mushrooms in red wine, blues cheese bread, baked potato and green beans with bacon or grilled zucchini. Looking for other options that go well with steak and won't have me at the stove the whole time.
your meal sounds good, but maybe a tad heavy. may instead of the green beans, a big leafy salad with blue cheese dressing - or maybe just the classic steakhouse wedge of iceberg, blue cheese, lots of freshly cracked black pepper. (so maybe do away with the blue cheese bread.)
I think your menu sounds great as it is - one minor change is that I wouldn't do the blue cheese bread unless you're sure he likes blue cheese. It isn't to everyone's taste, and its pungency could put a damper on some of the more...romantic aspects of the evening. If you know he likes it, though, go for it! You could dress up the potato aspect by making a gratin or something like that, but a classic baked is always welcome. Your vegetable sides sound great, but if there is another vegetable that you like better, really anything goes with steak and potatoes. If you want to make a sort of steak-house "classic" meal, try creamed spinach.
Add a nice bottle of red and maybe some chocolate mousse for dessert and it sounds just about perfect!
A mushroom risotto finished with Parmesan would be nice, but you said you don't want to be hanging around the stove too much (would require 45 min undivided attention). Roasted sweet potato chunks would be nice as would roasted broccoli florettes. Even though they would basically cook at the same time & temp, I'd use 2 separate pans just in case.
I honestly think you're fine with everything as you've noted - the sauteed shrooms in red wine can be done ahead and set on the back of the stove to keep warm; the potatoes go into the oven for baking; the grilling of steak and zucchini can all be done together.
Or if you choose to do the green beans, they can be steamed / sauteed while the steak rests (or turn the beans on to steam when you flip the steaks). The bacon also can be done ahead of time and crumbled over top of the beans at the end.
You need potatoes. I've rarely had a steak dinner and not had potato of some type. Simple as a baked potato. Rub olive oil on the skin, sprinkle with sea salt, into a 500 degree oven for 45 minutes. Skin is crisp. I eat the whole thing.Like to top mine with butter and a good pepperry olive oil. Or make some type of hash brown. I par boil potatoes until almost cooked through. Peel and chop into large chunks. Lots and I mean lots of olive oil into a hot pan with some butter and throw the par cooked potatoes in. Salt and pepper and toss to coat. Less the potatoes sit and turn periodically after the bottom has crusted. Do that a couple of times. What you end up with is a potato dish that has some crisp browned parts and soft melty bits. But you need to use plenty of oil to make sure it doesn't stick.. Last suggestion is to make crispy smashed fingerlings. Boil the fingerlings until done. Drain them and then press them down until the skins burst. Get a hot pan add oil and add the fingerlings, salt and pepper. When the bottom is brown, flip them and brown the other side. Top with butter and serve.
-twice baked potatos!
Doing it right takes some time but they can be done in advance so you don't have to scurry about.
I do mine the following way:
- bake an extra potato to make sure you have enough filling (I never have enough filling - unless I do this) Note I just cut the top off with enough space to use my mellon baller to get the baked potato out- many people just cut them in half.
-make your own bacon bits and add ALL of the bacon fat back to the filling
-after you've scooped out the filling place the potato skins back in the oven for a few minutes to crisp up. Prior to stuffing.
for the filling:
-bacon bits (2-3 slices cooked crisp) fat reserved
-2-3 green onions light green and green parts
-sour cream and butter
-roasted garlic - 2 - 3 cloves per
-chedder cheese for top (blue or goat would also work nicely).
- add the above to scooped out baked potato - re-stuff top with cheese. Bake in the 350 oven for about 10-15 minutes (can be done as you're grilling and resting the steak).
It's not a low fat dish- to be sure but you can go a bit father to make them gourmet. Since they're done before and you can get on with making the rest of your meal instead of worrying about baked spuds and all the trimings.. it's done.
You might also think about cremed spinch or kale, a baked onion with balsamic, a stuffed baked tomato?
Let us know what you decide to make and how it works out - good luck.