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Date night help

p
Pwelsh4 Nov 30, 2013 10:08 PM

So I have date coming over to my place in a couple days and I need some help with the menu and some drink pairing.

I have decided to make a spice crusted ribeye steak. Now it'll be a bit bigger so it'll be like a small roast and I'm basically doing this recipe ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nXZCVn... ). Now here are my questions and thoughts.

1. The only side I can think of right now is a salad and hasselback potatoes. Now I can't really go wrong with a salad but are hasselback potatoes a good choice? And what else should I serve with it?

2. We are going to be drinking wine. Now I know with red meat you go with a red wine. However I'm not sure of what kind to go with since it has the various spices of fennel and coriander and if that makes a difference. I was thinking a Cabernet Sauvignon or a Syrah/Shiraz. Any better choices or good brands?

3. She is bringing dessert, italian rainbow cookies, but I still plan to have a little something. Now either that's a dumb idea to make dessert or I'm planning something with fruit like angle cake with fruit and handmade whipped cream or the simple chocolate covered strawberries.

Now this date is important in more ways than one so I'm hoping you all can help me out. Thank you in advance.

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  1. fldhkybnva Nov 30, 2013 11:20 PM

    1. I think any potato dish is nice hasselback or you could do crash potatoes. Another idea is sauteed or roasted mushrooms.

    2. I don't drink much wine so I can't help with recommendations but I've read that the old adage of red wine with red meat is not necessarily always best to follow if you have a white that pairs well. Otherwise I think a Syrah would be nice.

    3. You could make something chocolatey to balance the cookies, I like the strawberry idea although a nice chocolate bundt or lava cake would be fun too.

    Best of luck!!

    1. v
      vonshu Nov 30, 2013 11:45 PM

      let her do dessert dont worry about it

      3 Replies
      1. re: vonshu
        melpy Dec 1, 2013 04:53 AM

        I agree. If I said I was bringing something and the host went ahead and did his own thing especially on a date I would feel back. However a fruit plate can be refreshing and not considered dessert per se.

        1. re: melpy
          p
          Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 05:58 AM

          Yeah I was thinking of that. I actually forgot she was bringing dessert and when I start cooking for others, I just decided to cook everything myself and don't expect much from the other person

          1. re: Pwelsh4
            a
            autumm Dec 1, 2013 03:01 PM

            Do a fruit and cheese plate for your not really dessert but just in case.

      2. MrsPatmore Dec 1, 2013 12:03 AM

        1. Hasselback potatoes are a great choice. My only comment is to be sure that your date likes beef and spices. If you are getting a spendy piece of meat, I'd be careful about getting too carried away with spices - good meat like that shouldn't need a whole lot more than salt and pepper.
        2. I would serve a simple appetizer before the meal. If you do that, salad + meat + potatoes will be a good main.

        3. It's beaujolais nouveau season now, you might consider that wine, esp if you don't overdo it on spicing the beef.

        4. If she's bringing cookies, I would not prepare a separate dessert. OTH, if you want to put out a small plate of artisanal chocolates would be thoughtful but not trying to upstage her cookies.

        5. This may be stating the obvious, but get as much done ahead of time so you can enjoy the company of your date. I hope it goes well!

        1. i_am_Lois Dec 1, 2013 01:05 AM

          I agree you should let her be the only one doing dessert. If you make something also she might feel you have no faith in her abilities, or that you must always be in charge of everything. That is how I might feel. Since there is a bunch of spice on the steak, I hope you consider a mild, creamy dressing for your salad. The potatoes sound like a good idea and someone mentioned mushrooms. Those would be perfect too. Wines I'm not good at recommending, since I'm not that familiar with various types. But I wouldn't want one that was too sweet or dry with this meal. Do you plan on continuing to drink the wine with dessert, or will you be serving coffee (which I think I would prefer)?

          9 Replies
          1. re: i_am_Lois
            n
            nothingswrong Dec 1, 2013 03:43 AM

            I agree. Maybe we are crazy women, but I also would feel a bit slighted if you'd asked me to bring dessert and then prepared something "bigger and better" like a cake. Just do the strawberries, or other fresh fruit.

            The rest of your menu sounds perfect. I'd be very happy with it, personally.

            1. re: nothingswrong
              p
              Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 06:07 AM

              Well I just get on a cooking kick so I just keep cooking. I also forgot she was bringing dessert at first so I already planned it but I can scale back to just fruit or the chocolate covered strawberries.

            2. re: i_am_Lois
              p
              Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 06:05 AM

              We are going to drink more wine after the dinner. I was thinking more of dessert wine. Something that could pair well with the cookies and the fruit.

              1. re: Pwelsh4
                hotoynoodle Dec 1, 2013 08:17 AM

                might think about a little something nibbly while dinner is cooking? olives, spiced nuts, cheese straws, something like that.

                sauteed mushrooms or green beans with butter are simple sides that will pair well with the meat and potatoes. unless you do a chopped salad it can be messy to eat.

                cabernet is often the default red for steak, but is not usually a great pair with spices. consider a rhone red or spanish grenache for your dinner.

                cookies and wine don't really go. :) but don't worry about it.

                DO NOT make a separate dessert. you're totally good with fresh fruit.

                1. re: hotoynoodle
                  c oliver Dec 1, 2013 09:48 AM

                  Rather than just hitting "recommend," I have to add that as soon as I got here and saw that you'd posted I thought "well, I SURE don't need to" :) And I'm glad you continue to preach about keeping pre-dinner snacks as just that - a little something light. I still remind myself that they're to whet the appetite not kill it :)

                  1. re: hotoynoodle
                    rabaja Dec 2, 2013 07:51 AM

                    I agree with the stick with fruit advice, but I have to say I love a little cookie with the last bit of wine in my glass.
                    And vin santo and biscotti is my favorite dessert

                    1. re: rabaja
                      hotoynoodle Dec 2, 2013 09:34 AM

                      good biscotti are not super-sweet. the rainbow cookies are.

                      1. re: hotoynoodle
                        c oliver Dec 2, 2013 09:41 AM

                        Oh my! I finally Googled and saw what they are. They really are cake and not cookies.

                  2. re: Pwelsh4
                    Ttrockwood Dec 1, 2013 06:11 PM

                    For a dessert wine i had this delicious fizzy itslian one recently, which is the picture.

                    A moscato or italian lambrusco would also be lovely.

                     
                2. g
                  Gail Dec 1, 2013 08:29 AM

                  You sound as if you are not familiar with wines. Since you didn't mention your wine budget, it's hard to suggest. I would go to a wine shop, let them know your budget and menu and take their advice.
                  Love your menu, but I agree go easy on spices to let the steak speak for itself.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: Gail
                    p
                    Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 08:55 AM

                    My budget is fairly small. Any bottle of wine I would get will be $20 and under. I was just hoping for the best type of wine and if anyone knew a good brand that would be a plus.

                    Yeah the steak will just be covered and I'm letting it sit in the fridge over night so itll be like a dry cure like the guy did in the video. So hopefully it won't be to much spice but I'll be sure to go easy on it

                    1. re: Pwelsh4
                      n
                      ncghettogourmet Dec 1, 2013 09:42 AM

                      Gail is on the money - ask a wine shop for suggestions.

                      What you may want to consider is if your date is a wine drinker. Think about her age and formative life experiences. If she is - the stronger reds will be great. If she is not the Beaujolais is a great "intro" red. Louis Jadot is typically $ 11-15 (and I'm in NC, in NY usually $10).

                      Unfortunately or fortunately sweet whites have dominated many moderate markets particularly the 30& under. So if she is used to Moscato/Riesling/gutzf(can never remember that G one) /Pinot Grigio or Mosels a Pinot/Shiraz/Syrah might be intimidating and discourage her from finishing her glass. That can be awkward and intimidating. At a bar you can laugh joke and order a glass of something else. At a home date, I'm assuming you want her comfortable and to lose some inhibition.

                      If you are truly unsure as to her wine taste I'd encourage you to move your price point down a few dollars and get a couple of options and allow her to pick. Or if you are alpha male you can pick for her, watch her drinking and if it's not being consumed switch it up.

                      Beaujolais as an option for the main. I typically get Louis Jadot but there is another brand at the same price point with a white label - it was described to me as being "Pepsi v Coke" in the taste difference. Having had them as well as $20-25 btls I find the Jadot and it's counterpart perfectly acceptable. Also good because if she has an established pallete this can become pre-dinner sipping.

                      Two Rosé - one a shade dry. One a shade sweet. Again the $10-15 range. It's different, but rose holds it own against red meat if your date ends up being a novice wine drinker. If she is a wine drinker it will be good as a pre-dinner drink during appetizers or cooking/small talk.
                      The sweeter rose can be for after dinner conversation. It is also refreshing so if you found yourselves with lost inhibitions it makes a good intermission drink.

                      A Syrah/Shiraz for the main as a standby if her pallete can take it.

                      So think of it as giving her the option between the dry Rose and Beaujolais to start and from there you know what the main will be. If she goes stagnant with her wine drinking you pretty much always have something else to try. If you were planning on spending $20/bottle anyway, your final budget isn't too far off.

                      1. re: ncghettogourmet
                        p
                        Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 10:03 AM

                        Well shes a wine and beer drinker and she's not to picky. I'm sure I'm more picky but after a couple glasses I'm sure we won't be too picky. I'm only 23 and shes 21 so our life experiences are lacking but we tend to drink when we can. Again I think I might have some more experience since I'm always trying what I can to find something nice while she takes what is given to her.

                        I wanted to have some wine to make our dinner a little more fancy cause she would be fine with a 6 pack of Shocktop.

                        I like the Two Rose idea because for us there will be a lot of talking and joking around before and after dinner but I also plan to have a variety because even if she doesn't like some, I can always have it for later.

                      2. re: Pwelsh4
                        c oliver Dec 1, 2013 09:48 AM

                        You can go to the Wine board and find plenty of suggestions.

                    2. s
                      Springhaze2 Dec 1, 2013 09:11 AM

                      How about just using basic salt and pepper as seasoning for the beef and put the seasonings in your potato and side?

                      For hasselback style potatoes, I use a pretty heavily seasoned melted butter to baste the potatoes. For this dish, I use dry herbs and seasonings: garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, sage, thyme, oregano, rosemary, chipotle powder or smoked paprika for a little smokiness, etc.

                      As others suggested, mushrooms would be nice. I would saute mushrooms, onions and garlic, with a little fresh thyme and rosemary, add red wine and beef broth/stock and make a bit of a reduction. The mushrooms are both a side and a bit of a sauce for the meat and potatoes.

                      A simple green salad with a light vinaigrette and maybe some high quality crumbled blue cheese on the side.

                      As a female , I agree that you should not make a dessert. But some fresh fruit or a plate of strawberries would be nice. (I wouldn't even even do chocolate covered strawberries, as they might be seen as upstaging her, but a small bowl of sugar set out with the strawberries would be ok.)

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: Springhaze2
                        MrsPatmore Dec 1, 2013 09:33 AM

                        I'd go easy on the garlic + onion . . . this is a date night, after all! :-)

                        1. re: MrsPatmore
                          s
                          Springhaze2 Dec 1, 2013 09:39 AM

                          LOL, I work under the theory that two garlic eaters cancel each other out...

                          1. re: Springhaze2
                            MrsPatmore Dec 1, 2013 09:43 AM

                            Well, yes, they do in my house! :-) In fact, garlic is considered an aphrodisiac around here. LOL

                            1. re: MrsPatmore
                              p
                              Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 09:55 AM

                              Well she's Italian so I'm sure some extra garlic would be just fine lol

                              1. re: MrsPatmore
                                s
                                Springhaze2 Dec 1, 2013 10:24 AM

                                Here too! ;)

                          2. re: Springhaze2
                            c oliver Dec 1, 2013 09:50 AM

                            I don't think it's gender based at all. I think if anyone offered to bring a dessert s/he could be at least miffed if there were another one. Fruit at the most but even that isn't necessary.

                            1. re: c oliver
                              C. Hamster Dec 1, 2013 03:47 PM

                              Yes.

                              If I offered to bring dessert and my date accepted that offer but went ahead and made his /her own dessert. Well ... that would be date night the last.

                              I'd not do fruit either.

                          3. g
                            Gail Dec 1, 2013 09:19 AM

                            Conn Creek 2007 cabernet ($25. or so)
                            Seghesio Zin 2011 ($20-$25)

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: Gail
                              hotoynoodle Dec 1, 2013 12:40 PM

                              different states have varying distributions of wine. not all wines are everywhere. :)

                              1. re: hotoynoodle
                                g
                                Gail Dec 1, 2013 04:58 PM

                                I get that.

                                I'd be interested in your suggestions and I'm sure the OP would as well.

                                1. re: Gail
                                  hotoynoodle Dec 1, 2013 05:18 PM

                                  i already suggested a rhone or spanish grenache. plenty of good values for either, definitely red-meat-friendly.

                                  for values from the rhone i like domaine de montpertuis, delas, and bernard levet.

                                  spanish grenache: vinos sin ley, pinol and zestos.

                                  no idea what is available in florida, however.

                                  1. re: hotoynoodle
                                    g
                                    Gail Dec 1, 2013 05:59 PM

                                    Ah good for me to note too. I'm not that familiar w/ Spanish wines.
                                    Being from CA, I tend to lean in that direction...or French.
                                    Well, now he (OP) has a good spectrum. I still would suggest the wine shop. Often they have a special "barrel" with good buys.

                                    1. re: Gail
                                      c oliver Dec 1, 2013 06:17 PM

                                      I've definitely gone to a 'real' wine store, tell them about a dish or a meal, give them my price range and have always been pleased.

                                      1. re: c oliver
                                        hotoynoodle Dec 2, 2013 06:59 AM

                                        a decent store is always happy to help. agreed.

                            2. yayadave Dec 1, 2013 09:27 AM

                              I'm thinking that since you know she's bringing cookies, if you just happened to have some French vanilla ice cream on hand, it might go well WITH the cookies. Those are not just plain sugar cookies, by the way.

                              If you want to step things up a little, how about a little cheese tray between dinner and dessert?

                              You might choreograph things a little. Think about removing to another room for cheese and a different wine and going back to the table for dessert, or some variation of this.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: yayadave
                                p
                                Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 09:34 AM

                                I like the idea with the ice cream and might to do that. I would move around more but I live in a tiny studio place so my kitchen, living room, and bedroom are just one thing

                                1. re: yayadave
                                  s
                                  Springhaze2 Dec 1, 2013 09:44 AM

                                  Good point that those are not just plain cookies, actually more like little cakes.

                                2. inthekitchen Dec 1, 2013 09:35 AM

                                  A fruit and cheese plate, with some olives or a tapanade would make a nice appetizer. That way, it would not look like you are trying to have a back up desert available.

                                  1. w
                                    wontonfm Dec 1, 2013 09:43 AM

                                    Hasselback potatoes sound great. I'd also consider doing smashed potatoes (I usually use Thomas Keller's technique from Ad Hoc minus the garlic confit). I'll sometimes top them with blue cheese and caramelized onions but that might be a bit much for this meat.

                                    I agree with the general consensus of NOT making a dessert in addition to her dessert. But like the idea of having something to go along with the cookies whether it's ice cream, an assortment of teas or an after dinner cocktail or something.

                                    Good luck!

                                    WON
                                    http://whatsonmyplate.net

                                    1. d
                                      DowntownJosie Dec 1, 2013 09:55 AM

                                      I think your menu sounds delicious. I am female and love steak but love the sides more. Here are my 2 cents:
                                      You can go old school steak house specials-kicked up ten notches
                                      You can start with colossal shrimp cocktail
                                      Hassle back potatoes-great and crunchy
                                      Roasted cherry tomatoes- easy, light and juicy
                                      Or
                                      Ratatouille
                                      Stuffed mushrooms with -decadent, soft and crunchy(they should both be topped with a crunchy topping)
                                      1) creamed spinach
                                      2) blue cheese/goat cheese/Boursin
                                      Caponata-luscious
                                      http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ma...
                                      I like this recipe but go easy on the cinnamon
                                      I like the idea of fruit and/or chocolates
                                      Don't forget nice good decaf it sane or you can go all out and prepare a decadent boozy coffee with whipped cream
                                      I think she will really appreciate your thoughtfulness.

                                      1. n
                                        nemo Dec 1, 2013 10:26 AM

                                        Not too many comments on the salad, so here's a link to something I've always wanted to try. I think individual plates could be made slightly ahead of time and loosely covered with plastic wrap and held in the fridge, bring to room temp when she gets to your place. Cute enough to serve in place of apps, at the table, before the heavier meal.

                                        http://mymansbelly.com/2011/12/21/sta...

                                        So loving to cook for a sweetheart!

                                        15 Replies
                                        1. re: nemo
                                          c oliver Dec 1, 2013 10:35 AM

                                          That sounds and looks good. I think it would be easy to have each ingredient ready and assemble while the steak is cooking and/or resting. Not sure that lettuce-coated dressing would lend itself too well to being done much ahead of time.

                                          1. re: nemo
                                            LaLa Dec 1, 2013 03:27 PM

                                            That looks delish but no way would I eat it on newish relationship date...but I am totally making it for my 20 year hubby! Lol

                                            1. re: LaLa
                                              c oliver Dec 1, 2013 03:36 PM

                                              I'm curious about what makes it not "newish relationship" appropriate.

                                              1. re: c oliver
                                                LaLa Dec 1, 2013 03:45 PM

                                                I don't think salads...unless they are chopped..to be good date or work dinner food. Notice i was speaking for myself...ymmv.

                                                1. re: LaLa
                                                  hotoynoodle Dec 1, 2013 03:55 PM

                                                  i said the same upthread.

                                                  lettuce pieces can have minds of their own -- like dangly pasta. anything that can splash sauce or dressing isn't good date or job interview food.

                                                  not to mention most salad dressings clash with red wine.

                                                  op: not sure where you are, but in my neck of the woods, strawberries are long out-of-season and the supermarket orbs are devoid of any real flavor. might want to offer pears, apples, clementines or something more seasonal. slice/peel as you go, maybe a few walnuts along with the fruit and the cookies.

                                                  1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                    c oliver Dec 1, 2013 03:58 PM

                                                    Ah, good point. I had a final interview for a job decades ago that was dinner at a high end restaurant. Rest assured, I considered every possible thing I would NOT order :) Got the job btw.

                                                    I like the accompaniments for the cookies. Casual and yet 'feels' kinda sophisticated to me.

                                                    1. re: c oliver
                                                      hotoynoodle Dec 1, 2013 04:02 PM

                                                      my italian-american family always had seasonal fruits and nuts out after dinner, alongside dessert if there was one.

                                                      1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                        c oliver Dec 1, 2013 04:07 PM

                                                        I can just see this 21 y.o. girl telling her friends about this the next day. "We just sat there eating cookies and having bits of fruit and some nuts." It does sound so just right somehow.

                                                        1. re: c oliver
                                                          p
                                                          Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 04:12 PM

                                                          Well not many girls are having guys cook for them either, especially in their 20s. I think her telling her friends the fact that I cooked just about everything will make them jealous

                                                    2. re: hotoynoodle
                                                      p
                                                      Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 04:09 PM

                                                      What are some good dressings that work with red wine?

                                                      I'm in FL so strawberries seem to always been in season but I definitely didn't think of season fruits and stuff.

                                                      1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                        hotoynoodle Dec 1, 2013 05:00 PM

                                                        even in florida, strawberry season is over for a while, so whatever is in the stores has just been held in cold storage.

                                                        any high-acid dressing is going to clash with most wines -- white or red. you could try something with a bleu cheese dressing, but that's a heavy start to a steak dinner. i am also in the camp suggesting something other than salad. :)

                                                        and yeah, not too many guys in their 20s are cooking scratch dinners, so good for you!

                                                        1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                          c oliver Dec 1, 2013 05:09 PM

                                                          I found a crazy good creamed spinach recipe from Fine Cooking. All the components can be prepped ahead of time and it comes together quickly.

                                                          http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/cl...

                                                      2. re: hotoynoodle
                                                        n
                                                        nemo Dec 1, 2013 05:06 PM

                                                        What strawberries?

                                                        1. re: nemo
                                                          hotoynoodle Dec 1, 2013 05:20 PM

                                                          from the op...

                                                          1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                            n
                                                            nemo Dec 2, 2013 09:46 AM

                                                            Gotcha.

                                              2. Cherylptw Dec 1, 2013 12:37 PM

                                                I'm impressed that you're going all out for a date...more men should:-) I would find out if you're date likes mushrooms before you make mushrooms. Not everyone does. Find out if she likes onions also as you can go with caramelized onions instead of the mushrooms as another option.

                                                If you feel your date might welcome a nibble before the meal, it could be as simple as a few oven baked salami chips to go with a first glass of wine. If you know she's not a big eater, go straight to the salad course and skip the nibble.

                                                I think your entrée needs more than just a potato (but that's just my opinion) and your potato dish is spot on, which goes well with the beef. You might consider a simple sautéed spinach or a blanch & sautéed fresh green beans with garlic as a second side.

                                                As far as dessert, don't overshadow her cookies. If you absolutely feel you need to provide something else, think about something that would enhance her cookies like a lemon or lime curd, a small pitcher or bowl of vanilla bean crème anglaise or small scoops of sherbet or ice cream. IMO, chocolate covered strawberries trumps cookies.

                                                As far as the wine, don't go with the belief that white wines only go with poultry or seafood and red only goes with meat. Drink the kind of wine you like whether it be white or red. If you want to have an after dinner drink with dessert, a glass of port, brandy/cognac or coffee flavored liqueur would work.

                                                23 Replies
                                                1. re: Cherylptw
                                                  c oliver Dec 1, 2013 01:24 PM

                                                  While I'm fine with white with red and vice versa, I honestly can't see a rib eye steak with anything other than some kind of red.

                                                  And is that an assumption that OP is male?!? :)

                                                  1. re: c oliver
                                                    s
                                                    Springhaze2 Dec 1, 2013 01:48 PM

                                                    The OP said they were cooking for a female...they did not exactly specify if they, themselves, are male or female. That part was assumed.

                                                    1. re: Springhaze2
                                                      c oliver Dec 1, 2013 02:08 PM

                                                      As I said, an assumption :)

                                                      1. re: c oliver
                                                        p
                                                        Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 02:19 PM

                                                        No I'm a guy. I like to treat my ladies special so I go all out for those special few. The rest get to super size at McDonalds lol

                                                        1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                          c oliver Dec 1, 2013 02:27 PM

                                                          I just like to occasionally remind people that we are well into the 21st century and guys do sometimes have special guy friends :) And all are welcome at the table.

                                                          1. re: c oliver
                                                            p
                                                            Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 02:35 PM

                                                            That is very true. No hate here. I've made dinner for a couple before because neither of those girls could cook lol

                                                            1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                              c oliver Dec 1, 2013 03:12 PM

                                                              There ya go!

                                                            2. re: c oliver
                                                              s
                                                              Springhaze2 Dec 1, 2013 03:31 PM

                                                              And some girls have special girlfriends, so the OP could have been a girl. And yes, all are welcome at the table.

                                                              1. re: c oliver
                                                                Cherylptw Dec 1, 2013 06:05 PM

                                                                Yeah, some of my best friends are guy and or girl couples; I'm with the 21st century...

                                                        2. re: c oliver
                                                          LaLa Dec 1, 2013 03:29 PM

                                                          I honestly can't see a ribeye without a bourbon but some people like wine ;)

                                                          1. re: LaLa
                                                            p
                                                            Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 04:07 PM

                                                            Oh well there will be bourbon. Wine will be the main focus but I always have beer in the fridge and tons of various liquors and liqueurs as well so we can always change it up depending on the mood

                                                          2. re: c oliver
                                                            Cherylptw Dec 1, 2013 06:20 PM

                                                            YES, it is an assumption based on reading the post!!

                                                            1. re: Cherylptw
                                                              c oliver Dec 1, 2013 06:23 PM

                                                              Asked and answered :)

                                                              1. re: c oliver
                                                                Cherylptw Dec 1, 2013 06:44 PM

                                                                :-)

                                                          3. re: Cherylptw
                                                            p
                                                            Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 02:32 PM

                                                            Well she's a special girl so I'm trying to make an impression on her. I like that idea of baked salami chips. Do you have a specific recipe you like?

                                                            Well I was thinking of something other than the hasselback potato and a salad and I think the blanch & sautéed fresh green beans with garlic or some sort of vegetable would be great as a second side.

                                                            I think I'm going to get some nice ice cream to go with the cookies and just have those strawberries just in case the date gets a little more special.

                                                            I've decided to get a variety of wine, both red and white, so we can have our choices plus I can have more to choose from later for myself. For dessert I'm sure we'll have more sweet wines and possible some creamy, chocolately, or coffee flavored liqueur drinks.

                                                            1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                              s
                                                              Springhaze2 Dec 1, 2013 03:33 PM

                                                              You do realize that the cookies are not "cookies" but more like a layer cake. Right?

                                                              1. re: Springhaze2
                                                                p
                                                                Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 04:06 PM

                                                                Yes I do but I still think the ice cream would go good with it none the less.

                                                              2. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                firecooked Dec 1, 2013 04:20 PM

                                                                I can't believe no one has mentioned champagne ... Personally I think it goes with pretty much anything, is festive, and you can get a nice bottle of a California sparkling wine in your $20 budget.

                                                                1. re: firecooked
                                                                  Ttrockwood Dec 1, 2013 06:18 PM

                                                                  +1 for bubbly! Cava and prosecco are great budget bubbly options as well

                                                                  1. re: firecooked
                                                                    free sample addict aka Tracy L Dec 1, 2013 08:55 PM

                                                                    Or Cava, it can be reasonable too. I agree something sparkling adds a lot.

                                                                  2. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                    Cherylptw Dec 1, 2013 06:15 PM

                                                                    The salami chips are probably the easiest recipe you'll ever use...Preheat oven to 350F. degrees; line a baking sheet with parchment or baking paper and lay out thinly sliced salami in a single layer. Put it in the oven for 12-15 minutes or until the salami pretty much dehydrates like a potato chip. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and drain the chips on paper towels. Serve by themselves or use with a dip.

                                                                    I've also used these topped with feta and oregano & put back in the oven (using residual heat after turning it off) to partially melt the cheese. You can use prosciutto instead. I don't even like salami but these are so good....

                                                                    1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                      Ttrockwood Dec 1, 2013 06:22 PM

                                                                      Roasted green beans are amazing- just tossed with basalmic and olive oil, salt and pepper on a baking sheet until blistered. Toss with a few sliced almonds/pecans/whatever nut as serving.
                                                                      Could be in the oven at the same time as the potatoes.

                                                                      1. re: Ttrockwood
                                                                        c oliver Dec 1, 2013 06:25 PM

                                                                        I SO wish I liked green beans. I think it was eating too many of them growing up. It's the very last green thing that I will ever go for. If served them I will, of course, eat them.

                                                                  3. d
                                                                    dad1337 Dec 1, 2013 02:53 PM

                                                                    I'd go easy on the spice for the beef, the potato sounds great a light salad before but you need a vegetable something simple not to confuse the potato. A nice Bordeaux would go well , and if she is bringingg the dessert why not plan on cappuccino and Sambuca to accompany the cookies

                                                                    1. p
                                                                      Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 05:44 PM

                                                                      I have to say all you guys are a huge help. Here's what I have thought of so far thanks to you guys.

                                                                      Appetizer: Either no appetizer or salmi chips

                                                                      Main Course:
                                                                      Spice Crusted Steak (The one from the video so check that out)
                                                                      Hasselback potato
                                                                      Sauteed green beans with butter and garlic

                                                                      Dessert: The Italian rainbow cookies she is bringing and I'm going to have ice cream to go with it and maybe chocolate covered fruits just in case the date gets a little more special.

                                                                      Drinks:
                                                                      Water
                                                                      Soda
                                                                      Whatever beer is in my fridge (Mostly shocktop)
                                                                      An assortment of liquor and liqueurs
                                                                      She is bringing a Rioja and I'm getting Il Duca Stella Rosa as a dessert wine.

                                                                      What do you all think? What can I add or subtract? And what other wines would be good?

                                                                      13 Replies
                                                                      1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                        hotoynoodle Dec 1, 2013 05:48 PM

                                                                        sounds great! have fun!

                                                                        i would most definitely have something to nibble while you are getting everything together.

                                                                        1. re: hotoynoodle
                                                                          c oliver Dec 1, 2013 05:59 PM

                                                                          Adding some Marcona almonds and olives to the salami chips works for me.

                                                                        2. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                          yayadave Dec 1, 2013 05:56 PM

                                                                          The green beans sounds like a good switch.

                                                                          How about some GOOD coffee with dessert.

                                                                          1. re: yayadave
                                                                            p
                                                                            Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 06:47 PM

                                                                            Well I'm not to into coffee and I'm not sure about her but some coffee may never hurt. What would you recommend as a good coffee?

                                                                            1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                              yayadave Dec 1, 2013 08:20 PM

                                                                              I have no idea what's available in your neck of the woods. Just by looking around and making an effort to get something decent will probably improve your results.

                                                                              (And I really HATE to use that snobby sounding "decent.")

                                                                          2. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                            mrsfury Dec 1, 2013 06:00 PM

                                                                            I would be so impressed. Nice! You have it planned just right. This ol gal gives her southern approval, if that means anything at all. :D

                                                                            1. re: mrsfury
                                                                              p
                                                                              Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 06:48 PM

                                                                              Hey I'm a southern boy myself so that means a lot.

                                                                            2. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                              Ttrockwood Dec 1, 2013 06:26 PM

                                                                              I just posted above with a few dessert wine suggestions, i think anything bubbly (cava, prosecco, cali sparkling wine) would be nice to sip before the meal and/or with dessert. Many wine shops sell splits so you can get a half bottle

                                                                              1. re: Ttrockwood
                                                                                c oliver Dec 1, 2013 06:35 PM

                                                                                Splits aren't the same as half bottles btw.

                                                                                1. re: c oliver
                                                                                  hotoynoodle Dec 2, 2013 07:03 AM

                                                                                  a spilt or piccolo, is 187.5 ml -- more like a single serving.

                                                                                  a 1/2 bottle is 375 ml.

                                                                                  lots of people mix this up. :)

                                                                                  1. re: c oliver
                                                                                    Ttrockwood Dec 2, 2013 08:39 PM

                                                                                    Oops! I never buy them myself......:)

                                                                                  2. re: Ttrockwood
                                                                                    p
                                                                                    Pwelsh4 Dec 1, 2013 06:49 PM

                                                                                    Well I know she likes Prosecco so I'm going to a bottle of us to split and maybe make a sparkling cocktail as well. Use frozen fruit to help chill the drink and give it that extra special presentation.

                                                                                    1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                                      Ttrockwood Dec 2, 2013 08:40 PM

                                                                                      Sounds perfect and very elegant!

                                                                                2. free sample addict aka Tracy L Dec 1, 2013 09:16 PM

                                                                                  Let us know how it turns out. Also, thanks for the link, I love the travelogue/cooking theme.

                                                                                  1. Sra. Swanky Dec 2, 2013 10:09 AM

                                                                                    Another vote for Prosecco and/or champagne. It'll go great with the fruit if you decide to accompany the cookies with it.

                                                                                    Best of luck, Pwelsh4 -- not that you need much of it! This meal is making this Norhern gal swoon as well! More men looking to please their lady loves should take note! :)

                                                                                    1. Ttrockwood Dec 2, 2013 08:43 PM

                                                                                      I am just going to state the obvious here, but please be sure that your inebriated sweetheart has a cab ride or another safe way to get back home from your lovely evening......

                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: Ttrockwood
                                                                                        p
                                                                                        Pwelsh4 Dec 2, 2013 08:57 PM

                                                                                        Oh of course. She either isn't leaving until she's sober enough to drive or I'll get her a cab. Its good that someone is thinking about that part of the dinner date

                                                                                        1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                                          fldhkybnva Dec 3, 2013 02:51 PM

                                                                                          When is the date?

                                                                                          1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                                            s
                                                                                            Springhaze2 Dec 3, 2013 05:56 PM

                                                                                            Please report back with results on the food! We don't need other details. ;)

                                                                                        2. Sra. Swanky Dec 9, 2013 06:44 AM

                                                                                          Hope all went well! (Don't see how it couldn't have!)

                                                                                          1. p
                                                                                            Pwelsh4 Jan 17, 2014 12:56 PM

                                                                                            So I don't know if anyone is following this anymore but I just remembered to tell everyone how it went.
                                                                                            First off, we had to keep moving the date around cause of the holidays and seeing family and what not.

                                                                                            But once we got everything figured out, I cooked and she loved it. I've never seen someone eat my cooking as fast as she did. Everything came out great. I took the green beans and sauteed them with peppered bacon, made baked potatoes and cooked that ribeye to perfection.

                                                                                            We had wine, beer, and a little liquor and just had a good time. Also her rainbow cookies were amazing. All and all definitely a good night

                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                                              n
                                                                                              nothingswrong Jan 17, 2014 01:39 PM

                                                                                              Thanks for reporting back. Sounds like it went well! Any woman who wouldn't enjoy your menu is no good.

                                                                                              Have you guys met up again?

                                                                                              1. re: nothingswrong
                                                                                                p
                                                                                                Pwelsh4 Jan 17, 2014 09:57 PM

                                                                                                No we haven't had the chance to meet up since she lives in Miami and I'm in Tampa. We talk but thats about it.

                                                                                              2. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                                                yayadave Jan 17, 2014 09:12 PM

                                                                                                Just the fact that you took the time and had the courtesy to "call back" and let folks here know how things worked out speaks well for you. I'm sure the date noticed and was favorably impressed by your thoughtfulness.

                                                                                                1. re: yayadave
                                                                                                  p
                                                                                                  Pwelsh4 Jan 17, 2014 10:14 PM

                                                                                                  She was pretty impressed. Plus she said that no one has ever really cooked for her, especially a guy. So she saw how much work I put into the dinner and really enjoyed that I did so much

                                                                                                  1. re: Pwelsh4
                                                                                                    hotoynoodle Jan 19, 2014 09:18 AM

                                                                                                    well done! always good to hear the postscript!

                                                                                                    good luck!

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